I started my morning screaming at people today. Granted I’m not a morning person, that’s no secret, but I don’t normally scream at people. Sure, I think it – but it seldom comes out.

“Get off the f’ing sidewalk!!” I believe is what escaped my lips with some really pissed-off arm gestures accompanying the words. This performance was directed at the 15 motorbikes barreling down the sidewalk towards me swerving as they were surprised to find someone actually WALKING, let along RUNNING, on the sidewalk. The traffic was so packed that everyone just thinks the sidewalks are meant as an overflow ‘lane’ for the congested streets. Absolutely nothing is sacred in this place.

This is just one of the many frustrations I experience daily. However, lately I’ve been trying to overcome another frustration; discrimination.

I try my best to do the impossible here in HCMC, go running outdoors. If any of you have been here, then you may know what a insane activity this is. I would be much safer skydiving or motorcycle jumping 10 beat up cars…while engulfed in flames. However I’m a runner, and I won’t give up that persona without a fight. Since moving to Asia, I’ve given up the persona of ‘corporate executive’, ‘fashionable’, ‘sex in the city character’, and ‘good party host’; but I won’t give up ‘runner’. No matter how hot and sticky it gets, no matter how bad the pollution is, no matter how dangerous the sidewalks are; I have to keep running, even if it is only 3 miles 3 times a week.

I go to the zoo to run in the mornings as long as it’s before 8AM. After 8AM furgetaboutit, too hot. I go to the zoo because it is the only place I can run where it’s safe outdoors. There are no cars or motorbikes, and there are actual trees offering a bit of relief from the scorching sun. The only problem is that it’s small – really small – so I have to run the same boring loop every 7 minutes. Describing it as ‘boring’ may be a little rough, after all I do get to see elephants, zebras, giraffes, ostriches, lions, and buffalo (the Asian kind) every loop.

Continue reading on ottsworld.com

Comments by other travellers

There are no posts. Why not be the first to have your say?

Post a comment

I want to
My comment - optional
Rating - how would you rate this place or experience?

About this author

  • Sherry Ott

    What is Ottsworld? It’s my journey! I quit my corporate IT job 2 years ago and said goodbye to blackberries, meetings and New Y…

Also by this author

Latest travel blog posts