A timeline of unfortunate events (the pissbag story)

Total travel days passed: 77

Total days in Vietnam passed: 3

6th March 2016 – 2:24pm
Reading my book in the park. Atmosphere is sunny and peaceful despite the chaos of the city in the background. Waiting for friends to go to the museum with. Out of nowhere I go to pass gas and almost follow through. Like to the point where you need to check. Close call. Proceeded to bathroom to find out last night’s Indian food didn’t agree with me at all.

Vietnam War Museum. Cool as tanks, depressing as hell graphic photos. Running to bathroom every hour.


Burger King dinner (bad, bad, greasy, choice for my predicament) followed by meeting up with more friends. Not feeling good, I leave and walk back to the hostel for an early night.

Although the other six people in my dorm were out, could not sleep. Shivers, fever, still upset stomach, frequent bathroom visits. No sleep.

Only decent sleep of the night…

Awoken by a person coming back from their night out in my dorm. He’s got a girl with her. Intentions were clear, they were about to break the unwritten rule of backpacking: don’t fuck in the dorms. (Do the honourable thing and take them to the showers instead.)

Five very loud and drunk people also staying in the dorm barge in. Yelling, laughing, basically being loud and obnoxious asshats. They seem oblivious to the person (and whole freaking hostel) trying to sleep.

Amidst the drunken ramblings and general douche-baggery, another extremely intoxicated and vocal human enters. Let’s call him Gandalf (due to his massive beard.) Gandalf is the rudest of them all. He turns on the light, and yells about me, not to me: “who is this guy? Actually I don’t care I don’t know him” much to the amusement of his friends.

Gandalf rallies his fellowship of fuckwits for some marijuana.  He extends his invitation to me. I decline. Eventually they leave to smoke.

All leave except the first couple, who proceed to take advantage of the slightly slimmer numbers in the room and get it on. I drown out the bed squeaking with the help of my ipod and Mr Leon Bridges. I try rest my eyes.

I leave to go bathroom because I am still on struggle street with my guts. Who do I find naked, boning in the bathroom (not even locked in the shower but over the sink! Goddam…) but the couple from my room. They then make a dash for the shower. I use the bathroom on the next floor down.

After settling back into bed, the fellowship returns. Just as loud. One says to me “you picked the wrong hostel.” No no no sir. You and your friends are just dickheads.

Can you believe it, everyone gets quiet and tries to sleep! The silence sounds so good after two hours of putting up with their shit. I don’t fall straight to sleep, which turned out to be a good move.

Gandalf, without warning, amidst the silence, just stands up. Walks over to my side of the room, and proceeds to piss all over my bag.


Shock, disbelief, and fury whirled inside as I jump out of bed yelling. I’m about to slap a bitch. Instantly Gandalf seems sorry as if he snapped out of a drunken sleep walk. He claims to not remember doing it. The rest of the room wake up. I am too outnumbered to lay a hook right above his stupid beard. I grab his towel and spend the next 20 minutes cleaning Gandalf piss from my bag.

The sun is on its way up. Despite arguably the worst sleep of my life, it’s hard to ignore the humbling colours of a new day. I catch my breath as I prepare to try sleep for the 10th time. Unless a number two is coming, I think the worst is over.


Only to be startled by none other than Gandalf, holding a few dollars. “I am so sorry man. However much for laundry, here you go.”

“Hi can I please change rooms?”
Reception: “Why you want change room?”
“I didn’t really get along with my roomates.”

Travelling is mostly fun. But it goes from 0 to 100 real quick. Real fuckin quick. One minute you’re almost asleep, nek minnit you awkwardly walk in on a naked couple who should have locked themselves in a cubicle. Or you think everything will finally be OK, and then someone urinates on the very vessel that carries your life’s possessions. Right in front of you.

From now on the sweet sound of silence will never go unappreciated. Mildly considerate people I cross paths with will never go unappreciated.

But most importantly, a neutral-smelling bag will never go unappreciated.


3 thoughts on “A timeline of unfortunate events (the pissbag story)

  1. Wow! What an experience. I’m actually reading blog posts due to some unexplained insomnia right now, but I feel a lot less sorry for myself now than I did three minutes ago!

    Hope you enjoyed HCMC anyway (it’s my honorary ‘other’ home town).


  2. Pingback: The high, low, and crazy points of South East Asia | Shawn Cleaver

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