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Posted by on May 11, 2015 | 0 comments

Happy Mother’s Day – If you are feeling down or just need a laugh, read on

From an earlier, happier Mother's Day

From an earlier, happier Mother’s Day

You have to have a good sense of humor when living in a developing country because as I mention often, things are different here.  I have had many experiences which remind me to be thankful for our government’s intervention and endless regulations.  It is hard to believe but when you don’t have them you can miss them.

I hope you get a kick out of my mom’s day story. I am currently drowning my sorrows and hope by the time I done telling you about my day, I will also be ready to laugh.

For the first time in over a year John got invited to play golf, and of course it was today – mom’s day. I was actually ok with it. We have been really busy the last week trying to get ready for everything that is happening this coming week; so a day to myself was just the gift I needed. (After a year of prep John’s project has its long anticipated launch with a team coming out from Seattle as well as a visit from Vietnam government officials, US Embassy and the usual suspects. We have a super busy week coming up).

I did some shopping in the morning and hoped to relax and watch a movie at home. Unfortunately the internet cable to Vietnam got cut (AGAIN) so the internet is spotty at best so that wasn’t going to work. I decided to try one of the local hotels for a massage. I know going into a massage here to always have low expectations; really low expectations. Today was no different. The picture for the massage at this hotel looked pretty good online, they were highly rated in the government’s newest “things to do in Hai Phong; and John had stayed at the hotel for about 3 weeks and they were good to him and also good to us when we have needed to ask someone for information.

Photo from hotel website

Photo from hotel website

As soon as I arrived I had a feeling I should run but decided to stick it out – my expectations were low, right? I was led from the reception area through the ladies room where a couple of Vietnamese ladies were enjoying the spa. I went into the massage room and was told to wait there. Usually at a Vietnamese massage place they ask you to undress but provide you with shorts and a top to wear. Not here – I was told to undress and get on the table (face up) which I did with the massage therapist watching. I wasn’t surprised that there wasn’t a sheet to allow for some modesty, but I was really wishing for one.

actual room photo

actual room photo

Out of the 15 or so massages I have had in Vietnam this is the first time I could tell that my massage person (can’t really call her a therapist) had no training. I am not sure what in the sam hill she was doing but it wasn’t anything like a massage. More like poking and prodding and of course cracking my toes and fingers. On and on it went and I kept wondering how I could end it early. When it finally came time to do my face I realized that there is where her skills were. It felt so good and I was finally relaxing and enjoying the massage when she turned, coughed into her hands and went right back to work.

At the end of the massage she waited in the room for a tip. I explained I only had large bills and would get change out front. As she watched me get dressed she straightened the sheet and towels and left them on the bed!!!!!

I came right home and took a long, hot shower and then poured myself a large glass of wine.

first of several glasses of wine

first of several glasses of wine

If your mom’s day didn’t go exactly as planned – just think, you could have had my day.

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