Don't lose your parking slip

Ho Chi Minh City Travel Blog

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Pool

Tuesday is my day of leasure here in Saigon.  I wake up whenever (Ok, so I do that Mon-Fri), and head to the pool in the Ben Thanh District of Saigon.  I refer to it as the pool, because I can't remember the real name.  When this piece is updated with photographs, the correct name will be incerted, and those who have not read it will miss out on this entire introduction.  Anyway, the pool is a nice retreat from the motorbike chaos of downtown.  Its about say a 20 minute motorbike ride for me, and even less if you are in District 1 or District 3.  It costs your 20,000 d for the day, which is $1.25, and it entitles you to swimming, and possibly tennis.  I'm not sure, I would play tennis, but I don't have a racket, or a friend who has a racket for that matter.

Lost?
  Thusly, I lay out, read a book, relax, and go for periodic dips in the pool.  The crowd is mostly Vietnamese, with the sparatic westerner.  There is also a restaurant directly adjacent to the pool, which serves very good, reasonably priced, Vietnamese fare.  I feel like this is a review.

Anyway, on my motorbike jaunt back, I decided to hit up Ben Thanh market for a shirt and a snack.  Its out of the way, but I tried for a shirt at the market on Ha Bai Trung, and failed.  I parked my bike at a place where I once got rejected from, for some reason, and headed in the market.  I quickly purchased a shirt, and two other small things, and headed out, but not before I sat down for a sinh to dau, or strawberry fruit shake.

The Market that eats parking tickets
  These things are good.  When I paid and grabbed my keys, I noticed my parking slip was missing from the bag where it was so carefully placed.  This caused some panic, because ironically the women who I bought the shirt off of told me to make sure I didn't lose it, as it was callously resting in my palm. 

Anyway, I try to explain that I lost my ticket.  No.  I tell them that I can rattle off the liscense plate number, describe the bike, and describe my helmet that is sitting on the bike.  No.  I try to bribe them.  No.  So, I go back and look around the huge market for my slip.  Nothing.  As I was searching around the daugher, or as I would later learn, neice of the sinh to lady offered her assistance.  Nice girl, but young.  I knew this from her unshaven legs.  She was 16.  She pleaded with the parking attendants.  No.  She confirmed my bribe.  No.  So, next I was suggested to show my liscence and registration for the bike.  Well, I don't own the bike, and I don't have any kind of liscence.  There goes that.  The last thing to do was contact the lady who I rent from, and have her come down and get the bike.  Well, it turns out she answered her phone and was set to come down.  Only, she then got extremely busy at her restaurant, and said that she would send a friend at some point.  Well, I had been already through a lot for a 15 minute stop, and now I had to wait further.  He finally showed, and seemingly had to fill out an "all about me", as it took forever, and he signed his name numerous times.  I finally got my bike and vowed not to park there ever again.

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Pool
Pool
Lost?
Lost?
The Market that eats parking ticke…
The Market that eats parking tick…