Last month, I took a 9-day vacation with my friends Cza, Jet, Julius and RK. We booked a flight 8 months before, taking advantage of promo fares and decided to visit Vietnam and Cambodia. Jet and Cza are my friends from MBA while Julius and RK are my officemates. RK was based in Malaysia for a year so during the previous "trip-planning" and other bonding sessions we had prior to this trip, he was absent. The group's first dinner was held sometime in August and I knew that this group would definitely click!
Two weeks later and we crashed Cza's house in Antipolo to finalize our itinerary. Yes, ganung level ng pangangarir ito.
While having breakfast the following day, this conversation transpired:
Jet: "Cza, invite mo naman kami sa bahay mo sa Butuan."
Cza: "Sure kelan niyo gusto?"
Julius: "Gusto niyo pagkagaling na ng Cambodia eh!"
*everyone looks at each other*
Everyone: "Tara book na!"
So there it is, ladies and gentlemen on how we came up with the following itinerary: Vietnam-Cambodia-Butuan-Surigao. At that time it was really exciting but as the day of the trip got nearer, I have come to realize how exhausting this would be or for the lack of a better term, suicidal. We arrived at around 2:30 AM in Manila and our flight to Butuan was at 7:30 AM of the same day. It was a five-hour window and we fervently prayed that there won't be any flight delays. Thankfully, save for the slight delay of the flight to Butuan, there weren't any major hurdles.
Now, another challenge is what and how to pack for this long trip since it is very inconvenient for us to bring our stuff for the Philippine leg along with us to Vietnam and Cambodia. So what Julius and I did were pack two bags: luggage to check-in for the international trip and a handcarry for the Butuan flight. Snce Jet liveds around 15 minutes away from the airport, we had him pick up our stuff prior to leaving for Vietnam for the luggage swap later upon arrival in the Philippines. More details in later posts. Okay, I must say that I am a very OC traveler and this is a proof of that:
|See what I mean?|
I have my itinerary in excel which includes screenshots of maps and other relevant stuff for the trip which includes what to wear. Haha! I just like everything in place.
|And I made sure that this itinerary was followed.|
Come day of our flight last November 10, we encountered a major traffic jam that it was a good thing that we left the Ortigas area at 6 PM. It was also the first day that RK met Cza and Jet. To our surprise, everyone was wearing blue in different shades. Amazing. :))
I was beyond amazed how Jet was able to fit all his stuff in his bags while the four of us brought luggages. Partida, may natira pa syang damit.
|Odd one out.|
Our flight got delayed and I badly wanted to sleep already. We just took advantage of the free (but utterly slow) airport wi-fi.
|Refugees lang ang peg.|
We left Manila at around 11 PM and arrived safely at Ho Chi Minh at 1:30 AM (HCM time). There is a one hour time difference, Manila being one hour ahead so we were able to cheat at least an hour of sleep.
I haven't even written about the trip per se. More of my looong vacation in my coming posts!