Update from Saigon (June, 2021)

Saigon Jun 3, 2021

Well, I am still in Saigon, Vietnam. It has been a long time since I did a real update on SaigonNezumi. I plan to write more often now. I will explain more towards the end of this post.

Situation in Ho Chi Minh City

Saigon is now in its 4th week of social distancing. Social distancing is a bit different in Vietnam when compared to other countries. Here, directives are issued by local governments establishing guidelines on "social distancing" that includes which establishments can remain open, which much close. Unlike other countries, these directives are issued before clusters get out of hand. That is why, as of today, there are only less than 10,000 cases of covid-19 in Vietnam.

Last Monday Directive No. 15 in Ho Chi Minh City was re-instated for the first time in over year. These directives are translated into English by different users on Facebook and eventually by the local media. Some Expatriates will take these English translations literally even if the translations are ambiguous.

For the average person, like me, I take these directives to mean "stay at home" and "go out when you need food". Gyms have already been closed for three weeks. Dine-in is no longer allowed for at least another week, though I think this will be extended another week. Then a week after that gyms will be open again...hopefully.

With each social distance directive, three in Saigon now, I feel I am getting more productive. It was much needed break after being burned out for so long.

Still,  I am waiting for the vaccines to arrive in Vietnam. I can go ahead and get my vaccinations here, if I want, and the Veteran's Affairs in the US will reimburse me. Unfortunately, we are not sure when vaccines will be available to the foreign community. Most likely, if I really need the vaccine, it is best I fly to Japan or even back to the US. That was the recommendation by the head doctor at the medical clinic I go to.

Staying fit

The first social distancing directive saw my weight go up from 88-89 kg to 93 kilos. It took forever just to get it below 90. The second social distancing directive I was able to maintain about 89 kg. For this directive, I decided to focus on a daily cardio routine with a couple body weight workouts a week. I also started intermittent fasting where I only eat between 11 am and 7 pm.

Right now I am at 87 kilos. My goal is 85 kg by the time I get back to the gym. Eighty-five is a good weight for me since my bespoke suits fit perfectly. At 80 kg, my suits become loose though I do look younger at the lower weight.

I still cannot wait to get back to the Olympic Lifts at Evo. After the first two directives, I loss focus. Loss of focus means you are not really interested in any strength gains. About a week before the gyms open, I will start working on my technique again and draft a new workout program. I really want to hit 200 kg with the squats in my life. Focus will get me closer to that.

What next?

Right now I just want to get through this, hopefully, last social distancing directive. I am finally back to coding again. Hard to believe just a couple years ago I could not even look at Python code let alone teach it.

I redesigned AmerisianWorld.com with Next.js + Tailwind CSS. I even wrote about it in my other blog, Matsunaga's Odyssey.

I really liked editing AmerasianWorld.com because it brought back my passion in writing, more specifically, telling a story. I am planning to write a book but I cannot decided whether to write a light novel or just an autobiography. I love light novels because I can use my imagination. Yet, I have friends who keep asking me to write my life's story. It seems that some people find my storytelling interesting.

It is something that I will have to explore more.

In the meantime, it is no secret that I want to move to Japan. I just have to be patient. No need to hurry at this time since travel is still curtailed.

Until the next blog post, cheers!



A Japanese Amerasian's Journey from the Caspian Sea to Vietnam. I am a RPCV Kazakhstan and a former US Marine. I am also the Tech, Social Media & Marketing guy for Baba's Kitchen.

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