Markets, Dragonfruit, Nuc Mia and Green Oranges

My weekend began far too early as I heard the shrilly cry of my alarm rattling around my still sleeping brain. 6:30am will never be a time for my mind to function so I decided to give it a helpful shove in the right direction with a can of Red Bull. This proved a positive and my brain was actually working by the time I got to work!

I got through my first few lessons with little in the way of problems and got on with planning Sunday. I ordered a sandwich off Ben, the office Sylvester Stallone alike, for lunch as I didn’t fancy going outside in the heat, which turned up at lunch and was delicious. From there the rest of the day was standard; planning, teaching, end of school, Indian, pint, flat, bed. Weekends are crazy boring.

Sunday came as more of the same, so we’ll skip through to my final class of the day which proved problematic. The first 90 minutes went without problem, the problem was that after 90 minutes I was up to the end of my plan with absolutely nothing to fill the remaining half an hour. My TA’s ended up going with singsongs, which include bastardised versions of the Wheels on the Bus and Ee Ei Ee Ei Ee Ei Oh. It was a nightmare.

From there I was meant to go to a party later on the night, which was the plan after some food and a couple of beers. After a couple of Larue’s we ended up at the Indian (same one as the previous night of course) where I got try Beer Laos (a tasty brew if you get the chance) alongside further expansion of myself.

From there I wasn’t feeling especially well but I thought it might pass so I joined a couple of others for a few games of pool and another beer. Well, I say beer, hard man that I’m not I had a can of Orangina. I started to feel both sleepy and a touch unwell so I replaced the party with a trip home to my bed.

I woke up the next day with a rather sore throat and feeling generally shitty, the general feeling of coming down with something. I decided food would be a good idea, Seo called and asked if I fancied finding a fried brekky somewhere, that seemed like something to fight it with. I combined that with the purchase of a box of Strepsils with added Vitamin C and a banana smoothie.

This seemed to calm my throat down some but as I type this now its still a touch sore still, but I’ve so far averted coming down with anything serious so fingers crossed that continues. I don’t fancy paying £35 to see a doctor and then more on top for the appropriate drugs if I can help it.

The only other thing of interest I can recall occurring on Monday is finish Studio 60 while drinking a litre of delicious chocolate milk. This was part of my strategy for getting better, I’d also used fresh orange and some prawn+chili flavoured crisps. Not exactly foolproof in fairness.

Tuesday I awoke feeling no worse but little better and early as it was basketball day, bleary eyed I made my way through some brekky before heading down there. I had a good run around and sweated out what felt like a good third of my water weight. This may be an exaggeration but a decent amount of liquid sweat came out of my t-shirt on to the floor when I wrung it out when we finished playing.

The next stop was work, on my way in I picked up a couple of kebabs and a fresh pineapple juice to keep attacking my sickness before sitting down to get a headstart on planning the weekend. I taught my one lesson of the day and took a quick bite to eat before heading home. Once there I finished my second Wilbur Smith, The Eye of the Tiger, (which has nothing to do with Rocky, sadly) and spent an hour chatting to my Mum on Skype, finding out whats been going on back home and such!

This morning I awoke to my alarm which had been set for the back end of breakfast time and grabbed some beef pho before heading into the ILA Bring and Buy sale in support of the local orphanage. Given I’ve not been here long I didn’t have anything I wanted rid of yet so I instead had a good search through other people’s crap and came up with two books and three movies.

The books were the Venetian Betrayal by Steve Berry and a Penguin classic, The Idiot, by Dostoyevsky as I like to read one every few months to make myself feel a touch educated. A classic that is, not a Dostoyevsky, this will be the first book of his I will read. The films were Inglorious Basterds as reccommended by Little Ian, and Born on the Fourth of July and Good Morning Vietnam as I’ve not seen either and I live in Vietnam.

Total cost 115,000 dong, Around £4.50 and it was going to charity. Result.

At the sale I met up with Seo, who was headed out to a market and I decided that as it was my day off I’d join her and have a poke around. At the sale I met up with Seo, who was headed out to a market and I decided that as it was my day off I’d join her and have a poke around. On the way to the market I shot some videos of Vietnamese traffic which I hope to get on facebook soon. For now the below picture will have to do until I get that chance.

The madness that is Vietnamese traffic.

Our first spot of interest at the market was the fruit lady, we picked up a dragonfruit to share, as I haven’t tried the Vietnamese fruit yet and felt I should on the back of the nudging of my little sister’s friend Anna. The lady cut it up for us there and then and as you can see in the picture below it’s a little bizarre looking, both inside and out.

Dragonfruit, utterly nuts and delicious!

In this second picture its the big pink fruit with the green bits coming off it. I can happily confirm however that it’s rather delicious. The fruit lady was great value as well, had a bit of banter with her despite the language barrier.

Dragonfruit are far left of the middle row, oranges bottom left!

Next up Seo wanted some fabric for a dress she’s having made so we went into the area of the market that was packed with fabric sellers and had a good poke around. My sister loves this kind of thing and the pictures below are going to make this the second post in a row which makes her jealous I think. Sorry Spudsy. The variety of fabrics was stunning and they seemed to generally cost around 40,000 dong (£1.50) a metre. (If there’s any you like Spuds let me know and I can send some homeward bound).

A small selection of the fabrics!

A selection of rich fabrics!

Fabrics purchased we were both feeling a touch thirsty and Seo asked if I had tried “Nuc Mia” (which I’m sure is spelt wrong) which I’d never heard of. She decided thats what we would be getting and I followed her lead in hunt of it. We found some tables and I was left to mind the bags. She came back with two glasses fully of a yellowy creamy liquid and filled with ice which is the best description I can give you as after having one taste I drank the lot in a haste which precluded my thinking to take a photo. The drink is made from the pressed juice of raw sugar cane with fresh lime and its wonderfully refreshing! I will try and stop myself next time and grab a pic before drinking!

At that point I decided that it would be nice to have the ability to eat some things when in the Guesthouse other than cookies and crisps despite not having a kitchen and came up with a short shopping list. A knife, a plate and some fruit. These were duly hunted out at the total cost of 53,000d (£2) and that included a mango (which reminds me of my good friend Francis Watts) and 2 oranges.

In an interesting twist oranges here in Vietnam are green and not orange. You might think that would make them rotten but infact you would be wrong. Apparently oranges only turn orange from the green they begin as when exposed to cold weather, in Vietnam they don’t experience said cold weather and so stay green. Apparently the oranges we all buy at home are treated with cold to make them oranger and thus more appealing. Who knew?

That done Seo needed to be at work so I’m back at the guesthouse and excited for an evening that will include movies, Mario 64, cookies and chocolate milk. I’m excited.

Love and Dragonfruit

J. Xx

PS Below are two pictures I wanted everyone to see but didn’t fit anywhere in the blog:

Does someone in Vietnam have copyright on the word 'Cake' ?

All different rices, all different prices!

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6 Responses to “Markets, Dragonfruit, Nuc Mia and Green Oranges”

  1. Green oranges? Whatever next XD! And yes, that fabric is gorgeous – the blue one in the bottom right of the second photo is lovely ;___;

    That traffic looks crazy – be sure you wear your stylish helmet at all times XD

    xx

    • Lol I’ve no idea, had a delicious fresh mango earlier tonight, too lovely and about 50p!! When I get some money together (next paycheque) I could go and get a couple of fabrics for you and send them home if you like, don’t want to send a boatload home first time as I’ve no idea how useful the postal service here is with parcels yet lol!

      Stylish helmet is with me on the regular! Probs get my own scooter when I get paid I reckon!

  2. das Dolmetschen = interpreting
    ein(e) Dolmetscher(in) = m(f) interpreter 😉

    I had a dragon fruit reduced a while back, but didn’t look at the name of it when I bought it – eventually someone enlightened me. You’re right, it tastes good, kind of creamy/custardy!

    Saw a German translation of The Very Hungry Caterpillar the other day and thought of you!

    Vietnamese lessons sound cool, I’ve just started learning Spanish myself in preparation for a mission trip to Tenerife in October. It can be a bit frustrated learning it in German, e.g. exposición means exhibition, similar to the English, but I have to say the German, “Ausstellung”. Which made me think – could you learn a language from scratch that’s not so foreign (e.g. Spanish) if the course was being taught in another language which was completely foreign (e.g. Japanese)?

    Also, lol at Cupp Keyk.

    • Lol nice, no world will ever be as good as schwarzwaldekirschtorte though 😛

      Yeah it is kinda custardy, its a very different flavour but tasty =)

      Ha, is it just as good in German? I love that book! Did Elmer at the weekend, amazing!!!

      Will probs do some, survival ones that but I don’t want to study it in any depth I don’t think! I wouldn’t see myself here permanently, think it will be a top year tho =) Spanish eh? I cant decide if I’ll do Spanish or Portuguese for when I go to South America, I know everywhere but Brazil speaks Spanish but Brazil is my #1 place to visit! We’ll see!!

      My students learn English from zero knowledge with absolutely no use of Vietnamese by me, that’s not exactly what you are saying but given that I think it’s certainly possible! Would be bloody tough tho lol!

  3. Dragonfruit looks kind of bizarre but sounds rather good, interesting about the green oranges! You certainly seem to be getting lots of opportunities to try new and different experiences it all adds to life’s colourful tapestry. I can understand your sister being a tad jealous of all that fabric at those prices I think she might have to set up a mail order business with you 🙂 I am getting excited about my forthcoming birthday and my suprise weekend away still no clues! Speak soon love Mam Xx

    • Yeah there’s a lot of cool stuff out here, I’m excited to do Vietnamese cooking lessons soon, I think you will like bahn xeo and beef pho among other things if I can cook them when I come home :D:D

      Lol yeah I figured spudsy might be a touch jealous, will send her some soon =)


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