Monday, August 12, 2013

Day 1: Settling down in Saigon

The journey continues. We finally arrive at our first destination: Saigon, Vietnam. After going through customs, our first task was to collect and secure our medical supply boxes. Each box was essential to the mission trip. Each box contained the medical supplies that we would be donating to the local hospital as a part our "Transfer of Technology" program. There was a total of 37 medical supply boxes and 10 dental boxes that we had to collect from the baggage claim. Each were packed individually during inventory day. As we occupied a section of the terminal, we proceeded to collect all of the boxes.

Officer Johnson, in charge of inventory, makes sure that all 37 boxes are checked and ready for the local hospital to pick up.
With the 7G team, we occupied a section of the terminal in order for us to pick up the medical supply boxes.
As each box was gathered off the terminal luggage claim, they were put aside and checked to make sure that all of them were there.
However, we then had our first roadblock: a missing box. As we double checked all of our boxes and luggages for it, we could not find it. This box contained endoscopic surgery tools worth over thousands of dollars, and misplacing it would be detrimental. After half an hour of searching for it, we had no choice but to contact the flight services and leave our information. In following, we entered the humid and cloudy Vietnam.

Even with the roadblock of the missing box, all of the 7G goers are excited to be here in Vietnam! Let's get the show on the road!
The roads of Vietnam were crowded with motorcycles, opening the minds of the 7G goers to the lifestyle of this country.
After a bus ride from the airport to Buffet GANH Restaurant at the Bong Sen Hotel, we ate lunch, trying the local cuisine for the first time. Eating buffet style, the 7G mission goers stuffed themselves with the best that Vietnamese food had to offer. From spring rolls to rambutan, all of the food was different yet simply delicious.
7G mission goers gather around the table to taste some of the awesome Vietnamese food.
Some of the delicious food that we had at the buffet. Simply savory and yummy!

After lunch, we headed to Hoang Hai Long Hotel for check-in. We had some down time before meeting up for dinner. As a result, we got our SIM cards for our phones, went to the bank to exchange money together, and explored the streets of Saigon for bottled water and snacks. With the 7G team, we made sure to stick together to ensure the safety of our team members. Dr. Timothy Bui also had his first dental training at the hotel for the dental team on the lay-out of dental program at the clinics. Sooner than later, it was time for dinner. We went to Quan Ngon Restaurant to enjoy even more authentic Vietnamese food. 

7G goers wait in the lobby, as they are ready for dinner. We're hungry!
The restaurant prepared for us by having us sit in at a long table.

The 7G team during dinner for the first time. Let's dig in!
Fresh fish prepared and ready to be devoured. Nom nom nom!
After dinner, we made our way back to the hotel. Tomorrow morning, we would be waking up at 6AM in order to make sure that we get to the Thien Binh orphanage is in Dong Nai on time. By the end of the day, everyone was tired and ready to go to bed. However, before going to bed, 7G mission goers were greeted with good news. The missing box was found!!! China Airlines finally found the box, and we made sure to deliver it to the local hospital. All in all, it was an awesome start to the 7G mission trip. The experience was only beginning on this journey.

Written by Johnson. All photos were taken by David.

No comments:

Post a Comment