Getting Started Housing In the past, I have made many references to my preference for living in a small town over living in an urban area. The difference is priorities — which aspects of life are most important to you?
In the Ask an Expat series I interview expats living all over the world. Gareth Thompson Home town: Londonderry, Northern Ireland His story: I had been far from the model student during my time in education while the subject I had majored in had done precisely zero for my job prospects and even less for my bank account.
From there, my first stop was Korea. I loved teaching and I loved exploring and this had only whetted my appetite. Life is easy for an English teacher here; work is easy to find and although I admit I have been extremely fortunate in finding a position as enjoyable and generously reimbursed as I have, there are plenty of other teachers who are able to live very comfortably with very little stress.
Besides this ease of existence however, the move was primarily motivated by the advice of friends who had spent significant periods of time traveling throughout the country. They were universally positive about life in Vietnam and, having returned with tans, beer vests and boat-loads of incredible stories, it seemed as though they might be on to something.
Aside from this however, some of the scenery on display throughout the country is simply astonishing while there is also a very unique charm to a city chaotic and as crazy as Ho Chi Minh.
Sure, the backpacker scene can get a bit tiresome and occasionally a little seedy, but all that can be forgiven when there is always be a party happening and beers cost less than 20 cents. Many of the people you meet on Bui Vien the main backpacker street are transient visitors looking to do little more than party and consequently, there can be quite a few who are less than well behaved.
Many of the bars are pretty sleazy while some of the poverty one witnesses on a daily basis is nothing short of appalling. Where fault lies for all this is not a question I feel qualified to answer but for visitors not accustomed to such sights, it can be a reality check.
The airport is very easily accessible from the city center, flights are plentiful and cheap and it is more than doable to check out one of these places over the course of a weekend.
There are tons of wonderful international restaurants around the city that could rival anywhere else on the planet but really, I like to try places that are frequented by locals. If it moves, people here seem willing to eat it so pointing randomly at a menu can result is some pretty interesting albeit occasionally inedible dinners.
There is a sizable TEFL Teaching English as a Foreign Language industry here and most of the foreigners you meet will teach in some capacity but there are plenty of others here as engineers, entrepreneurs or assorted volunteers.
This ultimately means that you are bound to encounter some pretty interesting characters during your time here as well as come across some others whom you might not be so enamoured with. Ho Chi Minh really is an incredible melting pot of people and part of the fun is the impossibility of knowing who or what to expect.
If you want to connect with the expat community in Vietnam there are several groups on Facebook such as this one where you can ask questions, find apartments for rent, etc.
If your experience has been limited to the developed world, there will undoubtedly be aspects of living in Vietnam that you will have to mentally prepare yourself for. Bureaucracy is laborious to say the least and it can get a long time to get even the simplest of tasks completed.
The traffic can be terrifying and outside the tourist areas, you will encounter very little English. The place is supremely beautiful, particularly when seen on an early morning cruise while Hoi An in the centre of the country is also wonderfully picturesque. For something a little more challenging however, I would suggest going to see some of the old war museums and learning about the horrific toll it took on its citizens.
It seems to me that, even amongst all this beauty and potential for fun, we as outsiders owe it to the people of Vietnam to remember this tragic chapter of their history.
Although born in Northern Ireland, he has spent the last seven years on the road and has called everything from Belfast to Beijing, Bangkok to Bishkek home.
He hopes to one day meet a generous older lady who will mistake his neurosis for genius and would love you to drop him a line. Ho Chi Minh City formerly Saigon has French colonial landmarks, plus Vietnamese War history museums and the Cu Chi tunnelsan immense network of connecting underground tunnels used by Viet Cong soldiers.
Once a lesser-known destination, Vietnam has become very popular in recent years.Hi You can also find another grocery store squeezed in between Ste. Famille church and the Centre St. Paul.
The church is kind of kitty-corner to the Nakumat, on the other side of the traffic circle. There is richness in the soil here. The other day, I walked by an opened manhole, looked down into the earth, and saw literally centuries of city: pavement, dirt, cobblestones a few inches under the dirt, rocks a few inches under the cobblestones.
Also, children who live in the city have access to good education, because there are better schools in the town than in the village. Living in town is better village life because in town we meet people different kinds of people; socialize with them and learn a thing or two from them.
I lived in Zagreb 7 years and I am a native Croatian. First of all, the average salary pointed here is not so low for Zagreb. kunas is the current average of Croatia, and average of Zagreb is more like if not 7k net because there is a huge difference here between salaries of entry-level positions/seniors and even low-level managers.
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JOAN'S ANNOTATED RECOMMENDED READING LIST.
This list of recommended authors and books is in no way intended to be a comprehensive, definitive or authoritative list of nondual or spiritual books.