4-26. Saigon Starts Coming Back to Life

The lock-down nw seems to be lifting, both physically and emotionally. The little car icon is back on the Grab screen. Restaurants and cafes are starting to open, though not all of them. My favorite steak place has a “for rent” sign in front — but my little cafe is open. Highland coffee closed, but The Coffeehouse is open.

There’s more action on the streets. The locals never really stopped congregating, but now they are back inside their cafes instead of on the sidewalks.

Business activity also seems to be picking up. A couple of projects have popped up, and my Dubai class starts (online) soon. People are checking in online for the first time in a while. After my awful trip to the US, I think I may have been the one driving my own sense of isolation. Just give me 6 or 7 weeks of solitary confinement, and I’m ready for action.

I don’t think anyone’s ready to declare victory – they made that mistake once here already. And the US still looks scary as hell – especially as it spreads to the middle and south of the country. Been watching markets there, and it seems they have baked-in a ludicrously optimistic set of scenarios. If it re-surges in the US – or anywhere else – it could mean lockdown or quarantine all over again.

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