I got a notice at the school yesterday that I had a package waiting for me at the post office. How exciting!
This morning I rode my bike the three kilometers to the post office. I still don't speak very much Vietnamese, so I gestured & smiled & pointed at my package notice. It turns out that my package was not waiting for me at the main post office, but at one of the branch offices, about six kilometers back the other way, they said. I had no idea where it was, but I set out in the direction that they pointed, thinking I would stop on the street in a few kilometeres & ask directions again. A treasure hunt!
I rode for what felt like five or six kilometeres (really, what do I know about kilometers?), & stopped at a quickie mart to smile & point at my package notice again. According to that guy, I was going in the right direction. I went another (?) kilometer or so & stopped to ask again. Nope, they said. Back the other way. Okay! So I turned around & headed back. I went back & forth another couple of times before I finally narrowed in on the post office.
When I went inside the (thankfully) air conditioned office, I showed them my package notice, now all sweaty from being in my pocket. They asked for my passport. Oh no! My passport is still in Saigon, awaiting my visa extension. I smiled like a dumb foreigner & showed them my Arizona driver's license. They passed it around, looked at me very sternly, passed it around some more, & then finally accepted it.
The treasure was mine at last!
Thanks to Scott W. for my new tin whistle & instruction book. I'm looking forward to getting started on my first lesson. The package came complete with an official government inspection letter. Way to keep the mail safe, Vietnam!