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Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Nonchalant Flipflops

Life indeed has full of surprises that it even gives you jimjams with your droopy feet on a yellow, public Ha Noi bus to the city centre.  

As I hopped on the bus, my purple, Ipanema flip-flops whispered nonchalantly, "sigh... looks like we're gonna stand again", and I grinned accepting the reality of commuting by bus. "Wish I had a company car and an English-speaking driver..." giggling while handing in the 9k VND to the pale, cold, stony-eyed bus  conductor on his loose, yellow polo shirt with a HaiVan bus logo on its pocket. 

Once I found myself a comfortable handle to balance, I realized that there were two teen-aged girls behind me sitting at the back of each other since the seats on both sides of the bus accommodate only one person. Anyway, I stood right beside the girl on her white and red knitted, balloon dress which I thought she ordered from an online shop she saw on Facebook. Her eyes looked flat while carefully staring at the glaring beams of the morning sun from the sooty window of the bus. Every now and then, I secretly scrutinized her day dreams while she was busy streaming some girly stuff on her Iphone. "Oh, she has seriously long nails and it looks like she's having a hard time using the touch screen with her unwary polished nails", I muttered. Then I took a deep breath and behaved like a kid guilty for breaking her mom's favorite mug. 

After three stops, two men on their thick, plastic skintight belts hopped on the busy box of motionless people with their right hands on the handles so as not to get their faces flat on the floor once the driver hits the brake. One of them asked each one the bus ticket while the other one was busy showing off his beer belly in front of the gossip men right at the back of the driver's seat. Then that bus inspector asked for my I picked it up from my denim pocket and handed it to him. In a few minutes, he asked me my bus ticket again, and I was a bit ticked off and said, "You already had it...what else do you want?". I was so sure he didn't understand a I just murmured in my dialect saying, "Bogo..dangag, makalagot...calm down Sue." 

What where they thinking? Why couldn't they do their job well? No, you won't expect them to work professionally, yet they dress up "like a sir"! LOL. Anyhow, the story didn't end that easy... since the bus conductor forgot to give the two people sitting and talking loudly at the back their tickets, he hurriedly walked past me with his mouth wide open like a hungry shark blowing a poisonous, stinky smell from his diaphragm! "Oh, gosh did he even remember to brush before getting into work?", I exhaled deeply. 

Darn, for someone like me who has an OCD and an extremely sensitive sense of smell, I almost threw up when a kid at the left corner of the back seat vomitted. The arid, cool air in that air-conditioned bus turned into a scene of a small alley in a remote village in the Old Quarter with the trail of weary, ugly drunkards on their torn, inverted denim pockets. I never wear any mask...but at that very moment, I wished I had my six-year old, pink Korean style mask I had as a gift from my Korean student six years ago. 

As we passed by a few more stops, say were in the middle of our destination to the centre of Ha Noi, a girl on her mid-twenties stood up from her seat and waited for the driver to kick the brakes. She was, I thought a jolly person despite her tough, thin supple brunette wig she was proudly wearing while confidently exchanging a chitchat to a weird man on her right. How could I forget her bulky, distracting band aid which extended from her upper right lip to the upper part of her chin along with her flirtatious smile towards him? "Oh finally, she got off...", I said looking at the strange behaviour of that man. He was in a grey polo shirt, with his brown, cotton, fishing bucket hat cap. "Oh, het tien..." he uttered. Yes, he kept talking to himself which made him sounded like he was complaining for an expensive bus ticket. On the other hand, I wasn't certain what he really wanted to tell the world, and how he seriously hates it. 

Then another character came in... yes I used to see that "big" lady on her early forties I guess on the bus number 71,72 and or 74 especially on weekends. She wasn't an ordinary woman, because she has the habit of staring at everyone on the bus, and or bugging the driver, and most likely talking to herself once the bus conductor gets tired of her non-sense. Well, guess what...that weird man in grey polo shirt was actually her friend! Ahahahaha! 

Alright so much for the awful, kinky chapter on that yellow box of lifeless strangers. I took off in Keangnam station and got a cab to Hoan Kiem for my class. The first cab I got didn't know how to get to the address I showed him, so I got another one. Thank goodness, he was so patient with my bad Vietnamese instructions. It was a rainy morning, but I didn't expect to get caught in the middle of congested roads, waiting for at least 4 minutes to make it to the next stop light. 

I called Rebekah, that Singaporean church owner to have my class canceled because definitely I wouldn't make it at 10am in which the class was supposed to start at 9am. She seemed not to give up, then I gave the phone to the cab driver...and the driver said that we were lost. "Oh no, we aren't lost...we're stuck in traffic!", I told Rebekah. So, to make the long story short...I ended up in a bookstore for some books which cost me around 150$. Arghhh...did I have a choice? Haha...NOPE!

Alrighty, it was about time to treat myself for a big bowl of Japanese cravings. I couldn't remember what was I eating...all I recalled was the awful, salty taste of breaded chicken with eggs. much as I wanted to whine and or get mad, I tried to think of getting myself a cup of my favourite Hazelnut freeze in Highlands to spice up my frustrations and disappointments. 

It was a long day, and before I went back to the dorm I picked up 2 boxes of Medium sized pizza in Al Fresco's for my awesome translators. Well, you don't wanna know what happened next...never mind, I'll keep it secret between me and Panther. 

July 7th-Monday

Panther's 188th song:  Love's Theme by Barry White
naughty girl to dad (Photo by Panther)

Photo of the day:AND I Love Her, too!

Tuesday- July 8th

Panther's 189th song: The Best by Tina Turner

Photo of the day: Nonchalant Par De Tres  #ipanema
my new companion

July 9th- Wednesday

Panther's 190th song: Baby I Love Your Way by Peter Frampton

"Yes, I do love the way you make me smile...wuv you!" Hugs and Kisses to the campers from Teddy. 

Photo of the day: Smart Teddy
he wants to take photos with daddy

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