Our last day in Ho Chi Minh City remained completely unplanned the night before. My dad has a couple of students who are from Vietnam and so he reached out to them when we decided we would be going. They in turn put us in touch with some of their friends who are still in Ho Chi Minh. I kind of figured they would help us plan and give some suggestions of things to do, places to go, places to eat, etc. Seems like more than enough considering how distantly and thinly we were connected. But one of the friends, Chi, seemed genuinely interested and willing to show us around a bit so we figured we would take her up on that for part of the day Saturday. We didn't want to steal her whole day! Well we didn't finalize things with her until Friday night and she ended up going way above and beyond. Originally we had planned on doing a foodie tour on motorbikes on Thursday or Friday but we never got back from our day tours early enough, and our flight left Saturday night and all the foodie tours are late in the evening. But have no fear, Chi came to our rescue!
So we met up with her and her friend Ian at the HCMC post office Saturday morning. It's a beautiful building.
A group of students asked Caleb if they could take a picture with Declan. He told them yes. Some nerve he has giving permission for a kid who's not even his! ;)
We played in the phone booths. Mostly because because it was air conditioned inside those bad boys.
Then we went outside and found Chi. She was so sweet and brought us some Vietnamese food to try first thing and some chocolate cupcakes for the kids which they loved, of course.
Then it felt like we were the body guards of some celebrities. Time and time again, people came and asked for pictures with the kids. Tatum didn't love it, but endured for the most part. Declan, on the other hand, was a complete ham. Every time he would come over to me after they left and say "mom, I say cheeeeeeese." Several of the requests came from more groups of university students who were evidently doing some sort of photo scavenger hunt. The best was when one group was walking away Declan waved to them and all the girls squealed like Justin Bieber had just waved to them. (Justin Bieber probably isn't even cool anymore. Go ahead and insert a more appropriate name.) It was hilarious.
We finally escaped the paparazzi and crossed the street to check out the Notre Dame Basilica. We got there right as they were closing the doors but we came back later to check out the inside.
After the market they took us to lunch. It was fun to have someone there to read the menu, explain the options and give us some tips and suggestions.
Once he got there it was time to hit the road on the scooters. Caleb and I all squinty eyed and ready to go.
I thought I would try to strap Declan to me with the ergo because I was feeling a little nervous right beforehand. It became clear that wasn't going to work mostly because he really did not want to. Luckily he seemed to stay put just fine. :)
They took us to an amazing dessert place. We tried ice cream with mango and sticky rice, a jack fruit smoothie, and ice cream with mulberry sticky rice. Chi also let us try her frozen yogurt which was way different than frozen yogurt in the States and very delicious. Caleb almost tried a durian avocado smoothie but they ended up not having durian that day. It was so disappointing! Instead we tried what Chi said was the best smoothie combination: banana, mango, passion fruit. She did not lead us astray. It was so yummy.
The picture is dark but it's Brennan, Ian, Chi, Tan, and Caleb.
Here are a whole bunch of videos of our motorbike rides.
Caleb had some fun with the dual camera feature on his phone.
Caleb, the big dweeb that he is ;), took a sideways video.