The newest trend in Southeast Asia expat groups is the sudden influx of begpackers. For anyone not in the know in the latest gossip, there is a constant bickering between bitter expats and lovey dovey backpackers running around Southeast Asia.
I personally dislike backpackers as a group, but all the ones I met have seemed like somewhat chill people. Anyway, the ones I hate are the people that you see running around drunk on Bui Vien, fighting trees in 23/9 park, having public sex parties in Siem Reap, and yelling at me for preferring Asian women.
Most of the annoying backpackers tend to stick to their own and I don’t have to deal with them unless I see them while looking for Vietnamese girls on Tinder.
However, the newest trend in backpacking that really grinds my gears is the rise of begpacking. Begpacking is travelling the world by begging for money. This includes travelling and begging in third world countries like Vietnam where the locals make like $5 per day or something.
You can find these people around the tourist district in Saigon (District 1) holding cardboard signs with some sob story. The locals see this and will give the begpackers a few dollars, but not give Vietnamese beggars money for some weird reason I can’t explain.
Meanwhile, cheeky expats like myself yell at these losers whenever we see them.
I was on a date with a Vietnamese girl eating bo la lot outside, which is basically “Vietnamese girls roll it for you” (VGRIFY) springrolls because I don’t know how to roll that stuff and Vietnamese girls are awesome.
Anyway, I digress, she was rolling my springrolls when this American chap that reeked of alcohol approaches our table. He has a rolled up cardboard sign and shows it to me. It reads:
“American. Lost passport. Need money to buy ticket home. Anything helps.”
Well, thinking this fellow American might actually need help, I asked him if he had spoken to the US Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City.
“Well, when did you lose your passport?”
This is a little strange.
“Okkkkk? How have you been eating and sleeping the past week? Why do you reek of alcohol?”
“I’ve been begging for money the past week and -”
This is the exact moment I lost it on this guy.
“WHAT DO YOU MEAN ‘BEGGING FOR MONEY THE PAST WEEK,’ YOU LAZY PIECE OF SHIT? YOU DIDN’T LOSE YOUR PASSPORT. YOU’RE JUST A LOSER ALCOHOLIC BACK HOME. AND YOU’RE A LOSER ALCOHOLIC ABROAD!”
He looks at me like a deer in the headlights. I look around and see all the Vietnamese people on the sidewalk staring at me even though they understood nothing.
Woops. I know losing your temper is a massive loss of face in Asia.
“Hey man. I’m sorry ab-“
“Just get the fuck out of my face,” I coldly say to him.
He slinks off into the darkness. My Vietnamese date asks me what I said approximately one second after he walked away, so I explain to her. The (cute) waitress then asks my date what I said.
Yes, Vietnamese people like to gossip.
I continue eating my spring rolls for the next 10 minutes. The waitress gives me a thumbs up when I pay.
I never used to have the balls to publicly yell at a person… this is the second time I’ve yelled at a stranger in 2018.
Maybe it’s my advanced age of 24.
Or my expat frustration.
Or maybe I just don’t give a fuck since I’m not in America anymore. I’ll go with that.