It finally happened!!!!!

 Posted by Sheryl Norris at 10:12 pm  Vietnam
May 102016

With so many volunteers coming through the centre it’s no wonder the govt staff aren’t particularly helpful or pleasant. For the first week I could not anything right even if it was right an hour ago. They told me off for everything…..don’t put that there…..go get that child out of bed… not that child put him back…..then a flurry of quick fire Vietnamese and they slam the door to there room and leave me to try and work it all out. I was sort of warned about this but until it actually happens you don’t think it’s as bad as it is. Very frustrating as all you are trying to do is help.

WELL yesterday I wore a pair of black very baggy pants that I hadn’t worn before. The staff were all over me asking where I got them and how cool the material was. Then a bit of a chatter amongst themselves and then they turn around to me and say…..this good (pointing to pants) we like them and you……today I got invited in for their big cook up they were having in their room. I had to turn it down as it was all meat mostly. They now think I’m ok but weird as i don’t eat meat….and i did say yes to the fruit and sweet rice dessert they made. Now im allowed to do all the things i wasnt allowed to last week, they help me, guide me and are talking to me in a broken viet/lish hand signally type of way.

Who would of thought that a pair of long pants would have done it aye….should have worn them last week,!

Yesterday one of the volunteer staff put on lunch for us. what an amazing feast. She wanted to say thank you to us volunteers for doing what we do.

Today is the bosses wife’s birthday, so there was another picnic for all the staff. Make your own Vietnamese rolls…you know the ones with rice paper. The director of the centre came as well. He sat next to me and through an interpreter we had a chat about all and nothing. He then made me my rolls asking me as he went if I wanted this or that in my filling. I was so embarrassed but was told this was normal for the eldest person there. Damn. …..there’s that ‘old’ subject again……then there was birthday cake. What an amazing cake. Two layers of the best and softest sponge cake I have ever had with egg white icing and amazingly decorated. Definitely the duck eggs.

On the way home tonight I  was feeling pretty good. I’m getting used to not wearing a helmet on the bike. So tonight as we are speeding down the road with the wind in my hair and my arms out ( think titanic) I felt on top of the world. Ang was laughing along with me as everyone stopped and watched us.

ok..ok……yes it was a vesper and yes we were only going 40kph but hey it still felt good. That was until we got back to the hotel and every one started laughing as my hair was frozen in the ‘wind through my hair’ look.

You might ask why my hair is like that …..or ….why wear product in your hair in a village in Vietnam…no product folks…..just a days worth of grime, sticky rice fingers, kids dribble and Lord knows what else really.

And then there was a really embarrassing moment this  morning. Things in the room were pretty frantic and all the kids seemed in a bad mood. Lots of crying, fighting and mayhem. Staff asked me to help change nappies and threw me some diposibles. Then they started going on at me to hurry so we could get some order in the place. Well I was so distracted with trying to settle this crying child so I could get nappy on that I put it on back to front!!! I don’t think I am going to be allowed to forget that for a while ?

i found out today that there is a psych hospital at the back of the centre. i have asked if i can have a tour. The answer is yes and just need to sort out when.

There is lots of govt workers that come to village for holiday and training. Today there was the army with their dogs ( German shepherds) training in the lake. Never seen so many dogs in one place and didn’t expect to see them here.

organising to go to Hanoi for the weekend to stock up on supplies, money and shopping?


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