I admit, I freaked out last night. I was in Vietnam physically but my soul was still chilling on that hammock overlooking the Mekong in Champasak, so when I saw a sudden frenzy of motorbikes, traffic and people, my god, all those people - I got a bit of a culture shock. I got roughly pushed out of my comfort zone and that didn't feel too good.
I miss Laos and find myself giving longing looks to the buses that are headed there, but from the morning until now, I'm slowly adjusting to being surrounded by crowds, buildings and traffic lights again. My experience here is improving slowly and I even feel calm and happy now, yay! It is much harder to meet other travelers here since I have the entire dorm to myself and everyone else just walks around in huge herds according to their nationality (compared to Laos where even an introvert like me could find people to hang out with everyday) and the locals aren't as friendly as what I am used to, but Couchsurfing has helped a lot. Dinner later tonight with a couchsurfer and also, I got to meet up with two girls who live here over lunch and it was good fun to know that some things transcend borders and language barriers. For example, "Twilight", "Outsourced" and good old gossip. Food has been good so far, although expensive and in the afternoon they whisked me away on their motorbikes to go have coffee (such good coffee!) at the most gorgeous riverside cafe that I have been in. I could have sat at that cafe for all day long, since it was so cool and had an awesome vibe, but the girls had to leave to go back, and since it was out of the way and they were my ride back, I had to leave too.
The original plan was to go walk around to the other side of the river (this city sits on two sides of a river) and check out the market there, but it started drizzling and some crazy winds hinting at an equally crazy storm started so I ducked into this Internet shop (3000 dong an hour, happy me!). Everyone outside packed up their tables/chairs/signboards but now, just 10 minutes later, there is no sign of rain. The sun is out again, but I'm too settled in this chair to move away right now.
So far, I have been ripped off once (USD 2 for a bloody coconut! ) and the vendors have also tried to short change me multiple times. Hello, do I look like I don't know how to count?! The motorbike taxi drivers however have been very accepting of a "no" with a smile, with the exception of one guy who took great pains to tell me what an important oppurtunity in life I am giving up by not going on his bike and following his advice to the T. Well, too bad.
Anyway, tomorrow morning fingers crossed I'll be able to wake up early, go visit the Citidel and the market on the other side of the river, then I'm off on a bus to Danang at 2.00 pm (60000 Dong).