My layover in Japan was short and nice. I walked around a bit and Took pictures during sunset, then developed some photos from a photoshoot I did for Rob's friends last weekend. I didn't bother with the $6 Internet and before I knew it I was boarding the flight to Saigon.
Vietnamese people are chatty, social people. I really wonder it is they talk about so much. One man dropped a bag out o an overhead bin onto another mans head across the aisle from me then apologized profusely. There were kids running up and down the aisle of the plane, standing on the seat playing with the lights, and a man got out of his seat right as we were about to take off to help a woman with a screaming baby. I couldn't help but smile at it all, what a show.
I sat next to a couple from Indiana who was on their way to volunteer at a cafe called the masters cup which I took to be a Christian entity. They were nice folks and I talked to the gentleman about traveling in Asia. He mentioned that VN was limiting visas since about a month ago, not giving out more than 30 day visas and for only a single entry. Good thing I've still got my 6 month with over 30 days left. He later said that he had been in Vietnam during the war, which makes him the first American I'd talked to about the war who had actually been in the war and then come back. Regrettably we didn't get much time to talk about it because I didn't find this out until the end of the flight.
We taxied forever and I soon drifted off with drams about taxiing to the coast of Japan and then floating off across the ocean to Vietnam instead of actually flying there. I woke up briefly for takeoff and then fell asleep to the feelings of the g-force and the many conversations all around, both of which were surprisingly calming. But then, it was 3am so maybe that had something to do with it as well.
I thought I was dreaming when I woke up. On television was a mix between Harry potter, star wars episode 1 and star trek. I wasn't dreaming though, apparently this is some dreadful new show. I kept anticipating a light saber duel between Spock and Malfoy.
I ordered a glass of wine and it was poured from an opaque plastic bottle you'd expect to find juice in. Meh, it was free so I can't complain.
We landed late and sat on the plane for a while before heading to the gate. I breezed through immigration and customs to find my lovely fiancé Tien and her awesome sister Mai waiting for me at the front door. We eventually found a taxi that would take Mai to the bus stop after dropping Tien and I of at the familiar Ruby Star.
The streets of Saigon were mostly empty due to what must have been a decent rain. They were wet and shiny and looked clean. It was great to have my fiancé back after so long apart and so many frustrations with I-129F. Here we were though, back in Saigon. It was very familiar and it seemed like only yesterday that I had been here.