Saigon. I’ve been here once before but I have to admit I don’t remember anything from this city. That time I was on a group tour traveling throug three countries during two weeks. Lots of impressions packed in a short period of time.
Everyone told me there is nothing to see here. It’s a big, busy, polluter and modern city. And in a way they are right. But Saigon is so much more than that. There is also beautiful back alleys, friendly people and of course awesome food. The latter I have to thank my friends Alex and Tango for. They are the foodies you want to explore the local cuisine with.
Alex I met when I was in Bali. We stayed at the same hotel, we had breakfast together every morning and consequently we talked a lot. Alex eventually invited me to come and visit her and her friends in Malaysia where they live. The consequence of spending two weeks with that lot was me gaining weight. They all took turns in taking me to different places for breakfast, coffee sections, luncheons, dinners food in between and thanks to Tango we even went fo food at 1 am. Yes, that place opened at 1 am. They are Chinese Malaysian which means, especially Tango, I was introduced to the divorce chinese cuisine. I also gained a lot of weight.
And now they are here meeting up in Saigon. Alex, her three children Matthew, Rachel, Rebecca and Alex’s friend Tango. We are all stayin in the same dorm. It’s like having a slumber party around the clock. I love it. I love them. When we met again two days ago they noticed I had lost weight. 10 kilos to be precise. A loss I neither miss nor regret.
Here is a riddle for you. How do you recognise a foodie?
My friends Alex and Tango get that special light in their eyes and their faces brightens up when we talk, look at or eat food. They will go that extra mile to find that local dish. We even went from having dinner, then to next place for desert and then to the local food stall for another dish so we wouldn’t miss out and then topping up with a fourth meal. All in one evening.
I love my Chinese family. They have thought me so much. I wish the rest of the family members could have joined but one can’t always get what you want. Next time in Ipoh.