Thursday, March 11, 2010

Sad decisions

There's been a change of plans to my change of plans. I went to the Chinese Consulate this morning to apply for a Chinese visa since I wasn't able to get one in Hanoi. I could get one and I could have it by tomorrow, but it would cost me $150. That's a lot for a visa! The most I've spent up til now for a visa is $100 for India, but even that was an anomaly; normally a visa is $30 or less.

I'm sad, bummed, and disappointed. I'd been looking forward to seeing friends both old (met in high school) and new (met in Thailand). I don't think I officially mentioned here before, but I'd also planned on going to Korea. The new friend that I met in Thailand offered up the extra room in his house if I was ever in the area and when I realized how close Seoul was to Beijing, I figured I'd be a fool not to go.

But, to use a really professional sounding term, I did a cost-benefit analysis. The high cost of the visa, the multiple bus and trains through China, the high cost of living in Shanghai, Beijing, and Seoul, and the nearly $400 one way ticket back to Cambodia just didn't add up. Or, rather, it added up to a lot more money than I wanted to spend for a two week diversion. Even considering that I'd have (free) places to stay in all of those cities, I'd end up spending well over what I spent the entire time I was in India in less than half the time (5 weeks in India vs. 2 weeks in China/Korea).

The new plan is the old plan. From HCMC I will head into Cambodia, first stop Phnom Penh. From there I'm not exactly sure what direction I'll head, but I'll figure it out along the way.


  1. Awww. That sucks. I know you were looking forward to seeing people.

  2. Sad, but sensible. I'm impressed that you haven't forgotten such concepts as cost-benefit analysis now that you're a woman of leisure!

  3. I'm sorry your plans didn't turn out!
    Are you going to meet up with the girls again?

    Love ya!

  4. ToadMama - Woman of leisure? I wish! A woman of leisure wouldn't have to worry about money and budgeting. But me? A backpacker? Thinking and worrying about money all the time! :-)

    Mom - I will probably see Rhian and Marina in Phnom Penh, but not after that. They're on a much faster schedule than I am. But it's okay because I'm kinda ready to be back on my own for awhile.