Heading out to the next hotel

Latest Updates:

  • As of April 6, Vietnam’s Ministry of Health confirmed a total of 241 cases of COVID-19. The updated number was an increase of just one additional case as of April 6 morning in the past 24 hours.
  • Vingroup, Vietnam’s large conglomerate, plans to produce around 55,000 ventilators a month to combat COVID-19.
  • Authorities have submitted a proposal to delay tax and land lease deadlines for a number of industries from real estate to labor services affected by COVID-19.
  • Hanoi city authorities stated they would intensify the social distancing rules and fine people who were out for non-essential reasons. In addition, ride-hailing motorbike services have also been temporarily suspended in Hanoi.
  • Vietnam imported 200,000 rapid test kids from South Korea to carry out mass testing.

I was identified for possible contact exposure via Coronavirus Case #237 after I arrived at this new hotel. He stayed one night at my last hotel while I was there, but I never interacted with him. Nonetheless, my current hotel and the local government sent me paperwork ordering me to quarantine myself in my room. They send me paperwork to record my temperature twice a day. Today, April 7th is my official last day to do this, but I believe I will volunteer for one additional week. The mandatory shelter in place is still effective until the 15th. I figure it won’t do any harm. I am well cared for and have everything I need. And I think it will help make the staff here comfortable being around me.
I’m taking every day one at a time and figuring it out as I go. This obviously won’t be the type of trip I counted on. At some point, I’ll have to cross over into Cambodia and I hope they have their situation contained. They currently have about 114 cases, but the borders are closed. I’ll have to head down that way soon, through central and South Vietnam and over the border. I have’t checked into Laos yet, but that may be an even better option. I don’t know. 
A few people have asked what the weather is like here. It ranges between 65 – 75 degrees Fahrenheit, give or take 5 degrees in either direction. Many days there is a low lying fog over the cityscape. I can leave my windows open during the day to freshen the air and turn the AC off if it’s not too hot. The traffic outside is consistent during the day, but it’s not blaring traffic with a lot of horns, nor is there much smog or exhaust fumes, despite being on a busy street. I can look down and see some pedestrians, but there is not much on any given day. 
Watching the Dragonball Z, “Perfect Cell Saga” with some seafood spaghetti and spring rolls. 
Though many people here can speak English it is sometimes a challenge to understand English phrases. It’s particularly more difficult on quarantine where I cannot speak face to face with anyone and I don’t have the benefit of Google Translate on my cell phone to show them. For instance, it proved difficult to get a lady to understand that I wanted a sandwich with double the meat, not two sandwiches. They call the sandwiches “bread”, for some reason. Not sandwich. They had a chicken sandwich. It was hella bread and little meat. So I asked for one sandwich with double the amount of meat. I tried many different iterations of that before it finally clicked. 
Another time, I requested my temperature monitoring paperwork which is supposed to be delivered in the morning and afternoon. They were late one afternoon and when I requested it, she thought I was referring to toilet paper. Then she thought I wanted paper for me to WORK on. But, I don’t lose patience. I find a different way to say it. 
“I’m on quarantine, right?”
“And I need to take my temperature.”
“Yes… so I need the paper to record my daily temperature on that I get every morning and afternoon.”
“AHHH!! YES! Sorry, we will bring it up to you, right away.”
They have all been good to me and have treated me kindly. Even though I don’t know the language, I’m still learning a lot about communication. I can easily put myself in their shoes. I’ve been there. AND they know a ton more of my language despite me knowing ZERO of theirs, despite being in THEIR country, not mine. Respect.