Gift -1-

From the bustling night crawl
You began as my shadow
We strolled the streets aimlessly
Until the veiled sun emerged

Time stood still as I
Looked at the murky river
And saw that beyond doubt, you
Had become my reflection

I’m reflecting back to the time I went to a pub crawl in Bui Vien Street, aka Backpackers Street, Saigon, almost a month ago.

When I came back to Saigon from my jungle and cave trekking expedition, I wasn’t ready to settle back down, so I went with my gut, booked a hostel, and joined Pub Crawl Saigon. For once, I felt like a tourist in Ho Chi Minh City.

A gift was bestowed upon me at the pub crawl. This poem tells the story of our first encounter. Oh, the beautiful memories of when we walked the streets of Saigon, viewed the (very anti-climatic) sunrise at Saigon River, and bonded throughout the course of the day.

The timing was just too unbelievable. Phong Nha has allowed me to test and extend my limits, build my confidence, and curate the self-love that I never truly had for myself. I came out of the experience with so much elation, and I knew that I had fully healed emotionally and taken a major step up in self-discovery. The itch to try new things continued flowing within me and pushed me to attend the pub crawl the night I came back to Saigon. It was as if meeting him symbolized me being awarded for my achievements.

So for those who are feeling lost, know that you can find your way if you put yourself out there and do what you need to do. It takes some trial and error, of course. We often focus too much on the destination that we forget about the journey, when it’s the journey that really shapes us. Therefore, be patient and persevere. Things will look up sooner or later.

Thank you, Vietnam and Tuan, for all of the amazing, life-changing experiences. Thank you so much for the wonderful memories, and for treating me so well!

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