Yesterday, the wife and I flew over to Ho Chi Minh City. After we landed, we took a Grab and headed back to our hotel, amidst the sea of motorists and sounds of honks throughout our 40 minute ride. It was raining when we arrived at the hotel, but we were greeted by a bell-boy who sheltered us with an umbrella and took our luggages into the hotel for us. At night, we had a very satisfying all-you-can-eat buffet dinner at Sheraton (by my count, the wife had 3 whole lobsters [as I am writing this, she is standing behind me arguing that she didn’t eat so much, but too bad, this is my blog], 5 pieces of seabass, 2 pieces of red snapper, a truck load of sashimi, on top of all the other stuffs she took)
It was her first time here and I wanted to show her around the city a little bit, so after dinner, we took a 10 minutes walk to the infamous Ben Thanh market. We enjoyed the short walk and the conversation that we had while looking around at the hustle and bustle of the city. There were many people sitting at some cafes and bars having conversations, and tourists haggling with sellers of bags and t-shirts. All-in-all, it was a pleasant day for the both of us
Later that night, we were lying on the bed scrolling pictures and videos of our daughter (a bad habit that we have every time we are away on a trip together). That’s when the wife asked me ‘During our walk to Ben Tanh market, did you see all the beggars?’ I replied ‘yes, I saw them too’
Apart from all the beggars, there was also the small kid who was hunched over a packet of tissue while he was sleeping. There was another grandmother sitting at the side of the street with two of her grandchildren (I assume). The little girl, probably 9 years old, was doing her homework on the side curb under the street lamp. The grandmother was carrying the other boy, which I think has Down syndrome (both of his legs were also tied together with a piece of cloth, which I assume is to avoid him from aggressively kicking his grandmother)
Since Joyce and I became parents, we somehow can’t bear the sight of another child going through hardship and being in a difficult situation. Previously, when we see a child being naughty and running around, we’d have responses like ‘haha, naughty little bugger, go back to your mama!’. Now, our responses are along the lines of ‘that little girl has very little hair, is it normal? is she malnourished? is she not well? I’m worried for her’. Way to go, Karma
Ok, back to the topic – The question the wife asked me and the sight of those small children really got me thinking….
How lucky are we?
I feel bad because we tend to forget about all the little blessings we have in our life. Just today, we had a comfortable cab ride, we didn’t have to get wet under the rain, we had great food and great company, we could walk, we had the intention and ability to spend money if we saw something we liked, we had pictures of a healthy daughter to scroll and look at, and we had a comfortable hotel to go back to. If we look further back at the past week, past month, or even past year, I’m sure we can see how truly blessed we are
I’ve decided, or rather, I should say I am reminded again – the next time before I get annoyed or pissed off by anything, I’m going to count my blessings first. I also know that a lot of you that are reading this post are very fortunate to lead very comfortable and good lives, and I am happy for you
So friends, family, readers, random person on the internet, let’s count our blessings daily and try to do more good, deal?
What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear from you if you have similar stories!