Vietnam a Retirement Destination part 2

After a fun dayMy friend Maz wants part 2 to the story get away.  Well……. I tried but I am guiding a tour fot the next 8 days and ror some reason, I cannot access the text. Sooooooo… tonight I am sitting on my bedside in my favorite hotel in Dalat (Dreams Hotel) It has been a bit of an adventure so far on this trip. We are hosting an older but young at heart couple through some of the most off the beaten tracks in Vietnam. we have started by exploring alternative routes and discovering a route out of Saigon witgout ever going on the dangerous hwy 1. We did it ! The back roads we found are fantastic and we avoid all the s**t traffic. Anyway…… Gords adventure continues…….

Now the story even takes a crazier twist.

It seems Owen knows a young girl (he says she’s actually 29 although you’d think she was no more than 15), and her brother is some real big

Tea fields
Tea fields

shot in the police here, so he phones her and she comes over to the hotel, and then her brother comes to the hotel, and they have this screaming session with the front desk girl (none of which I can understand), and it goes on for probably half an hour.  And eventually they figure out a way that they’ll be able to get me back my passport in the morning.  They devise this story that the girl will claim that I’m married to her, and this way she’ll be able to declare that I’m legally here in the country.  I tell them that there’s no way I’ll agree to saying that I’m her husband, but just get me back my passport, because I know I can’t leave this town without it. Owen says everything is fixed, so all we have to do is go to the police station in the morning and they’ll give it back before we leave.

So I go to bed wondering what will happen next. (So did I but I knew it would be fixed)

Can you believe it even gets crazier?


I go to the police station (this little place of not more than 20 by 20) – together with the front desk girl and the girl that Owen knows – and we sit and wait and wait, and the police guy (the only guy there), tries to look official, and is on the phone and then on his computer, and comes out with my passport and goes back into another room with it, back and forth and back and forth for over half an hour, and eventually comes up with this idea that he wants the girl to write out a statement to say that she’s my wife.  Well she is a simple country girl with limited language skills so the hotel girl does the writing, and I don’t have a clue what they’re saying or writing.  And I’m starting to wonder how long this is going to take.  And I make sure they know that there’s no way I’m willing to sign something that isn’t true.

But eventually – after about 45 minutes in this small building where I’ve understood virtually nothing that was said, I’m given back my passport.

Hey, and you want to know a really funny part.  You won’t believe the girls name: …..  “HNEEE”      I know Jason’s going to laugh his head off

River Crossing
River Crossing

when he reads that one.  And I’m sure I’ll get teased forever.

So then we all go for a nice breakfast….. you’d be surprised how different something called “steak and eggs” can be in a county like this.

And eventually we start our way back on a different route, …. this one up through mountain passes, and have another amazing journey through the countryside to go to Nha Trang.  And eventually get there at about 4:30.

Not sure what to add.  Just that I’m having an amazing time here.   Some things can be hard to believe, but for the most part I see the flow of life so natural and uncomplicated.  One friend of mine described the people in much of Asia as being refreshing and accommodating, …. and I’d have to agree.

Snake Jerky
Snake Jerky

Today I head out for a snorkeling trip – my first.   Another adventure, and who knows what will come.  Just good things for sure, and memories to cherish.

I know at some point I’ll head down to a place I visited on my first trip here, an orphanage that really touched my heart, and see what road that takes for me.

Love you all – Gord”


Ha!!! What a hoot!! I am so happy that Gord had the opportunity to experience the magic of Vietnam. Some might call it a curse and get overwhelmed with anger at the confusion but…….. It is the spice of life. That is why I am here!!!! And perhaps people like Gord. In many western countries it feels like life is over after a certain age, but here, we are all still viable human beings…….


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Tour designer and Guide specializing in off the beaten track tours of Vietnam

7 thoughts on “Vietnam a Retirement Destination part 2

  1. I will be visiting VN in January and February and plan on doing some touring. I may be accompanied by 24 year old step daughter (Vietnamese). Will we have trouble sharing a hotel room?

  2. So happy you finished the story… even though it took forever LOL

    your first time snorkelling? Really?
    Did you love it and did you see many colourful fish?

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