Booking for my return flight was something I planned carefully. I made sure to get the early flight from Da Nang to Saigon and a late flight from Saigon to the Philippines so I can have a whole day to explore a bit of Saigon. It was a not-so epic fail.
The moment we landed in Saigon, I felt really sick. You know that feeling when you have a really bad headache and it feels like your head is stuffed with cotton and you feel like you are going to have a fever but your temperature is ok? Yeah, that feeling.
I tried to explore and see bits of the city but I only managed to see the Pagoda and the park because I was getting worst. I ended up at the Phổ Quang Pagoda and sat there for a bit then walked back to Parkson CT plaza and stayed at the food court until 5PM.
By the time I went back to the airport my body is clamoring for rest. I did web check-in for an easier process but since the gate details was not included, I had no choice but to go through the check-in counter first.
Now this is what I don’t understand. Airlines always advise us that for international flight, be at the airport at least 4hrs before the flight. Well, the line was getting longer but he counter did not open until 10PM. I would have loved to go directly inside without going through the counter but there is no kiosk to print my boarding pass and again, the gate is not indicated. I feel so much frustration seeing the line at the immigration side getting longer and longer as time goes on.
After successfully getting my boarding pass and clearing immigration, I went directly to the gate and fell asleep. Now there were two airlines serviced in the same gate assigned to us, Vietnam Airlines and Cebu Pacific.
I must have been more exhausted than I thought because I remembered waking up and seeing people queue up for the flight to Osaka and thinking about how cute the two Japanese kids are who are playing in front of me. The next thing I know a woman was waking me up and asking me if I am Filipino. I groggily said yes, she asked me in Tagalog if I’m there for the flight to Manila and I said yes. I looked around and all the other passengers are leaving, I must have looked confused because she told me, “our assigned gate is moved to another one” and promptly guided me to the next gate. If not for that kind woman I would have been left behind in Saigon. I never even got to ask her name.
I slept throughout the flight and only woke up after the passengers were already taking their bags out. I hastily took mine and groggily made my way to the immigration counter.
Now at this point I am so glad I was not held up for further investigation because I must have looked really suspicious. The immigration officer asked me what airline I took and from which city and it took me a while to answer correctly. I was honestly so confused which airline because I had to use 3 on the return flight. Luckily the officer just stamped my passport and I am off my way. Still groggy and still bound to do some stupid things.
I went directly to the arrival hall to get to the departure area for my flight back to Cebu. At least that is what I was supposed to do. Instead, I stood there at the arrival hall and tried (and obviously and expectedly failed) to get a Grab taxi home. I had the audacity to feel irritated—first to my phone thinking that it failed to read my correct location, then to my mobile service provider for being slow and then to Grab taxi for telling me that my desired destination is not available.
It honestly took me a while to remember that I landed in NAIA and not in Mactan. Feeling so stupid but determined to get home, I went to the departures area and confidently showed the guard by boarding pass and promptly told by said guard that I actually have to go to terminal 4 because I’m flying Air Asia and domestic flights for AirAsia are in terminal 4.
After so much hardship, I finally got home and now feeling so much better. Going back to work later today. Ugh, I hope I survive. 😂😂