Thursday, June 3, 2010
Last night we fell asleep around 6 or 7pm. probably not a great strategy, but it had to happen. after waking up at 1:30am, we soon fell back asleep, only to wake up at 6am. Eventually we got up and went down stairs for breakfast, included in our stay price. Omlette and a fresh bun..so fresh and so soft. And french. I love bread and i was very happy to see it for brekky.
After a tasty meal made by an elderly woman in the little kitchen, we decided we would head south to the french quarter. I think we left the hotel around 9:30am? Along the way we were over charged for four doughnuts by a woman selling them on the street. they looked good and we had seen them the day before and wanted to try them. We paid $30 000dong for basically 2 timbits and 2 small crullers...$30 000= about $2.30 USD........how many timbits do you get for $2.30?? hehe anyway, not a big deal but we just felt a little taken. It's been a learning curve to figure out the converstion and to calculate it in the moment. We're nice canadians, it's hard not to assume the price is right. I mean, if we forgot our change in a tim hortons, someone would run out and give it to us...
To speed this up..We walked and found a pretty crazy little market..very back alley, lots of produce and lots of animal parts. Not enough people cooking them though...;)
After a while we did our best to head back towards "familiar" grounds. I've never had so much trouble navigating anywhere! Everything looks the same, but still you recognize when you are somewhere new. After a stop for food at a place with listed prices, we headed back to the hotel. It took us i'd say an hour to find it from only a few blocks away. We were losing our patience. Then this woman came along with fresh pineapple and basically put the carrier on hilary's shoulder and insisted I take a photo. Neither of us even had a camera out at the time. We both knew where this was going, but hell, i took out my camera and snapped one! haha...Hil was already irritable and lost, this was not a welcome gesture of robbery. Then, we switched. I took the carrier and stood there almost falling over while hil took an out of focus photo of me just to get it over with hah. Then she tried to sell us two small pineapples, sliced, for $50 000d! We talked her down to $25000...when really we should have just said no thanks in the beginning.
It's not so much the money, it IS relatively cheap for most things. But it's the constant feeling that you're being charged a different rate and don't know how to defend yourself. its kind of degrading and frustrating. It compromises my sense of entitlement as a white person. It's just not fair. :)
Ok, that's all from me. I'm going to go study the exchange rate.