On Friday 16th July I was up early and had pineapple pancakes and jasmine tea for breakfast while reading the news.
A (New Zealand) woman had escaped from her isolation area in Nha Trang and the authorities were searching for her, more here:
A Vietnamese friend in Saigon posted photos on her Facebook of what the conditions were like for those isolating in workplaces where there was Corona in the factories and so were unable to leave. I had some friends who were leaving soon or were locked down in Saigon and had questions about random stuff, so I helped them out. There was also a bit of a panic in Hoi An as there was supposedly 1 foreigner who had returned from HCMC with Corona and so today they were going to test all foreigners in Hoi An for the virus.
For lunch I had a bit of a strange concoction which happened to turn out really well, I was using up some fruit and veg too. I had a Momma D’s sausage roll, warmed in the oven, with white and red cabbage, carrot and gherkins and I really enjoyed it. I had pomelo and pineapple for afters and then made plans to collect my passport.
It was 1 week since my visa had expired, I’d had it confirmed verbally that it was extended until 9th August but had not actually seen it to see if it had that date, or even an ‘XC’ was written on it. I’d purposely not let the visa/passport issue stress me out this month and figured if it came down to it I’d just book the next available flight and go to Turkey. I was keen to go to the newly improved pizza night at The Villas that night so I got a lift with Duyet to the Phong Nha Farmstay in the jeep and arrived about 5.15pm. My passport was there and I was pleased to see it had the stamp I needed to stay for another month. I decided to have a celebratory beer, in fact I had 2, mistakenly thinking beers were 2 for 1 on happy hour. I ended up taking one with me because the shuttle bus to The Villas arrived on time. Lan, the manager at The Villas, came over to fill me in on the new rules of pizza night; instead of getting random slices that you either accept or decline when offered and until you’ve had enough, you could select your own pizza. It was still 100,000vnd (£3.20) for any pizza from the new list but didn’t include a beer or soft drink this time. So, the deal was less of a bargain for someone who could eat more than 8 slices and liked a beer but was better for someone who is more particular on the toppings they like and doesn’t usually have a beer. I preferred this new way and I finally decided I would have the Classic pizza and 1 beer which made my total spend 130,000vnd (£4.16) and I managed to eat almost all of it by the time Veronika came to sit down and ordered a smoked duck salad. It was a busy night and Ben was on duty sorting out the kids who were inside all having Margherita pizza and behaving very well. As there was just me in my ‘group’ I wasn’t able to fully take advantage of the great pizza prices, if there was a few of us we could have ordered a selection and shared so I would try that the next time perhaps. It would also be better for some of my Vietnamese friends who can only manage a couple of slices each of pizza and could share. Even though I didn’t this time, I thought it was a good idea to be able to add extra toppings for 10,000vnd (£0.31) and think I’d also give that a go in future.