Thursday, December 28, 2006

Good morning from Vietnam!

Good morning from Vietnam! I am having so much fun here in Saigon. More fun than I ever thought I could have. I have heard so many stories my entire life about what it is like here, and never really believed it...but WOW!

It is SO different here. So different.

The moment we got off the plane you could feel how different it was from any other place I've ever been. Saigon is a big city and not dirt roads like I'd imagined. BUT at the same time, it is amazing how you can mix traditional cultures with more modern concepts. The main street here in Saigon is lit up with lights in celebration of Christmas.

There are people on motorcycles, scooters, and bikes EVERYWHERE. Not just people on motorcycles...entire families on one motorcycle....families of four or five with babies standing up between the parents. There don't seem to be any road laws whatsoever and everyone just goes every which way...and yet, it all works. Crossing the street is a daunting task but after awhile, you get used to it. There are street vendors every few feet, women walking around wearing Vietnamese straw hats, "non la" and carrying baskets over each shoulder selling fruit. The markets are mixed with clothes, shoes, purses, coffee, tea, food, drinks, fruit, vegetables, flowers, and fresh fish still alive in little bowls.

My haggling skills are improving as is my ability to communicate in Vietnamese. I thought I would be slower at speaking and understanding, but I have made out fairly well, although it is still obvious I was not born and raised here.

Tomorrow we leave for a tour of other parts of Vietnam, Nha Trang and Mui Ne.

I am seeing things for the very first time I've heard about all my life. Trying tropical fruits I have only seen pictures of. Experiencing the culture first hand and being a part of it. So cool.

Other quick updates:
  • The earthquake in Taipei affected the internet service here, so pictures are a bit behind.
  • Unlike Hong Kong where the weather was moderate, it is hot and humid here.
  • Flip flops, tank tops, and capris in December? :)
  • Mosquito bites, stickiness and sweat? :(
  • I believe I have single handedly improved Vietnam's economy in the last few days with all my shopping.
  • After going to a theme park and not seeing the usual foods....I have a mad craving for french fries and buttered popcorn. Who knew buttered popcorn was an American thing? Not me.
  • The food is SO GOOD
  • Getting to see where my parent's grew up, went to church, went to school, and the paths they took back and forth was amazing.
  • I will be so shocked if I get out of here without having a heart attack from crossing the street or sitting in a taxi.
  • Pictures will be updated if internet connection cooperates throughout the rest of Vietnam. If not, next week from Thailand.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Vietnam is AMAZING!

Onward ho

Hong Kong was great. We got to see all of the sights, do some shopping, and eat some yummy dim sum. My original fears about not being at home for Christmas and missing out on the Christmas festivities dissipated once we arrived. Everyone seems to get into Christmas in Hong Kong. All the stores are decorated, Christmas lights are everywhere, Christmas trees popping up left and right, even the business offices were covered in lights and decked up for the holidays. Everywhere we walked someone wished us a Merry Christmas. We spent Christmas Day at one of the "other" happiest places on earth, Hong Kong Disneyland where we got to drown ourselves with the Christmas spirit.

Today, we arrived in Saigon, Vietnam. My family originated in Vietnam but I, born and raised in the United States, have never had the opportunity to visit. Walking out of the airport and being completely immersed in Vietnam has been one heck of an experience. Wow. Even though I have never been here, I felt like I was coming home.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas!Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year! May you have a blessed holiday with your loved ones and remember the reason for the season.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Gangsta caps


We went to LA this weekend to celebrate Christmas with my brother and got to go to a holiday party at the Dodger's stadium.
It was gangsta.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Ridiculous Peach

Conversation with my friend Adil:
Adil: I am eating the most delicious peach.
Me: How is a peach ridiculous?
Adil: ....delicious? I typed delicious, not ridiculous.


Me: LOL. wow
Adil: I mean if it tasted even better I could imagine calling it "ridiculous". Like "omg this is just ridiculous!" "do i believe this!?" *munch* *munch* haha
Me: No wonder I was so confused...
Adil: haha. Yeah I was like...okay...Kimmy has finally lost it.

Now I want me a ridiculous peach.

PJ Day

It is Pajama Day at work today. So this morning I got out of bed to get dressed for work and changed from one pair of pjs to another. Some of my thoughts this morning....

As I'm getting my coffee ready and about ready to leave for work I thought, "okay, just need to run upstairs and change, then I'm off for work!"....when I was already "changed".

Where does my badge go?

PJ pants are not sturdy enough to hold the blackberry and its holster.

I should have brought some normal pants too...what if I actually have to do something today after work on the way home?

Normal slippers or fuzzy slippers. Fuzzy.

Thursday, December 14, 2006


In preparation for our trip to Asia, Bertrand and I have to take a few pills for traveling. It's been tough keeping track of what pill to take when and for how long. Yesterday, we started our malaria pills. Today, I was so caught up in being proud of myself for remembering that I needed to take another pill that it never occurred to me that it was a litle weird that there were only 3 pills left in the bottle after I swallowed one. Afterwards, I read the label on the bottle and realized that it was not a daily pill...but a weekly one. Oops!

I called the pharmacist who told me that "most likely" the only thing that would happen to me now is that I would kill any mosquito that headed towards me.


Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Gingerbread Houses

Gingerbread HousemakersEarlier this week, my girlfriends and I got together to spend some much needed "girl time" together and to build gingerbread houses. This is a year of re-living my childhood memories. The last time I built and decorated a gingerbread house was in second grade in Mrs. Hillier's class.

We started off with getting the little walls up and balanced with the sticky icing, then started decorating the little houses with all sorts of goodies from marshmallow snowmen to sour jellybellies and of course we didn't forget the gumdrops. After a couple of construction disasters, a couple rounds of singing "These are a few of my favorite things" from The Sound of Music, frosting everywhere, and a minor toothache and tummy ache from all the candy eating...we showed off our beautiful gingerbread houses!

The problem with building something so cute is that it is almost too cute to eat.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Age means nothing

Pros only
Our skiing/snowboarding group on Saturday consisted of me, Bertrand, our friend David, and my dad. As the day moved forward, I, the youngest got tired first and quit early. I dropped off my stuff at the car, took off my boots, and headed back to the Village for a cup of coffee. An hour later, David, the next youngest called me and joined me for coffee. The two older guys of the bunch kept going and going. At the end of the day, they met us...only because Bertrand got tired. My dad was still full of energy and ready to keep going while the rest of us youngin's were pooped and our muscles were strained.

I think something is wrong with this picture.

A little rusty

My boardI went snowboarding on Saturday for the first time this season. I have been pretty busy lately...and lazy so I haven't been going to the gym to keep myself strong and in-shape. This was quite apparent once we hit the slopes and I, although the youngest...was the first one to quit for the day. The snow was okay but there wasn't very much on the ground meaning it took a little more muscle to weave my way down the mountain. As a result...I am so sore from my weekend adventures of snowboarding. Sore...but it was worth it. The storms have been coming in strong this weekend and will be back later this week. That means better snow coming!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

I feel like I should be embarrassed

...but I'm not really sure why.

Do you have those songs on your iPod that you're embarrassed or ashamed of letting others know that you are listening to them?

Like Jason for example who is a closet Ashlee Simpson and Kelly Clarkson fan...

The other day while playing on the computer and watching t.v. at home, I heard a song that I liked, so I went on iTunes and bought it. I was enjoying my morning listening to my new playlist of songs when I started talking to Nicole about how I had bought some new music the other day. She asked me what I bought and I paused not sure if I should share....

Two of the new songs I bought were by Meatloaf. I feel like ever since I was little, he was the artist that people made fun of each other for listening to. I feel like there is that stigma tied to him, like someone told me he was ultra-cheesy or lame or something and I just accepted that as fact. I really have no idea where that came from. Although...before this week, I'm not sure that I could have ever told you that I knowingly listened to his music or knew the difference.

Anyways...there it is. I guess I am a closet Meatloaf fan. Shhh...don't tell...

I'm sure you have some song on your iPod you put you cover with hand when others are around. What are you a closet fan of?

Monday, December 04, 2006

Fondue Night

On Saturday night we had a fondue night. We started with cheese fondue, moved to meat and oil fondue, and finished off with the best one of all....chocolate fondue which included fruit, rice krispy treats, Snickers, madelines, and marshmallows. I was in chocolate heaven. Friends, fun, and chocolate. What a great combination!

Google Holiday Party

MusicaThe annual Google Holiday Party was on Friday night in San Francisco and as is any Google event, we were not disappointed. It was Greek themed and there were several rooms with various themes and special individual touches.

Holiday Party ReadyThere was plenty of food, drinks, and golly were there a lot of people. It is amazing how fast the company has grown and how you don't really realize just how many people there are until an event like this that brings us all together.

Thank goodness for the giant blowup whale in the underwater room which we used as a meeting point...otherwise, we might have spent more of our night yelling through our cell phones or busy texting each other to assemble the gang.

Party peopleI get such a kick out of seeing everyone who is typically wearing "whatever" on a daily basis, get all dolled up and put together. Googlers clean up very nicely. Too cute.

Holiday girlsThis was my fourth Google Holiday party and has been and I'm sure will continue to be something to look forward to every year.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Officially gone crazy

I went to a meeting this morning and left my desk for about half an hour. When I returned, there was gentleman signing some papers at my desk who walked away as I got there. I noticed that my headset for my phone was on the floor. Strange. So I plopped myself down in my chair.

Why is everything so big??? My monitor looked ginormous, I could barely reach things on my desk with the same ease. My keyboard was at a much higher angle. Did I shrink???

What in the world...

How do I magically shrink in 30 minutes. Or how is it possible that someone would adjust my desk without anyone else noticing? I called all my desk neighbors together and asked them if I looked smaller or if they noticed anyone messing with my desk. Nobody was very sure...

Then I started getting questions about if I was abducted while I was gone and shrunken. We came to the conclusion...that I must just be going crazy and really nothing had changed.

As I sat and typed away attempting to be productive again, my uncomfortableness bothered me and the fact that I was going crazy. Then I remembered that one of my taller friends at work had complained about how he had banged his knees when trying to sit at my desk before and how he couldn't get into it. I ran over and asked him to comply with my experiment. He did and was able to slide into my desk with room to spare.

See?? I am not crazy! I did not shrink! The gentleman must have adjusted the WRONG DESK!

Why do these things always happen to me?

Update: I just found out that the facilities guy who was adjusting desks went to the wrong building and incorrectly adjusted my desk!