I just spent a span of days in a luxury suite at the Vinpearl Island resort. Swanky? Yes. Humbling? No. Outside the range of what I could reasonably spend per day? Most definitely. Fortunately, I have a family whose children I tutor like there’s no tomorrow (you never know, right?) and they paid for it all. Granted, I did have to baby-sit a bit, but there’s nothing wrong with that and, bog help those children, for all their short-comings, they know not to cross me. Under any circumstances. Ever.
We departed by train (“Luxury cars!” Kevin was quick to point out; the cabins were lined with realish wood panelling and there were automatic sliding doors AND the toilets were the sit kind, not the squat kind) late at night to sleep away the ride to Nha Trang. This is a good idea in theory, but in practice, David eats too much snack-food and 7Up and ends up barfing all over himself in the middle of the night. “You okay, buddy? Imma go get your mom, okay?” I said groggily.
While you, reader, might think that this barfing incident was a portent of things to come, you are too quick to jump to filthy conclusions. Nothing bad happened for the remainder of the trip. Well, I had to switch from the kid car to the adult car because Kevin and David’s mom was sleeping in my bunk to be near David. And, I eventually had to go back to the kid car and curl up on the sanitary end of the puke bed because the adults were snoring like freight trains (or maybe there were freight trains?), shivering underneath the clean end of a desecrated blanket, I wondered how many 30 year old men engage in situations like this with their dignity intact. Certainly none that I know of.
Holy shit, though, we rolled into Nha Trang at 4 something in the morning, had breakfast at some crappy hotel with a shuttle service to Vinpearl and then rode a speed-boat to the island. I’d be lying if I told you that my face wasn’t pressed up against a porthole, me squealing with delight, for the entire ride.
Kev-O and Nhi on the poop deck. I'm very new-age about poop decks: anywhere I poop is a deck. I'm open-mindeder than hell.
My room was fucking amazing. Me saying that is like a Russian telling you that an outfit is tasteful, though. I’m poor and excess grosses me the fuck out. I don’t really aspire to luxurious knowledge and experiences, I mean, so I don’t really know a god-am thing about it. Speaking of Russians,Vinpearl Luxury Resort was lousy with ’em. They weren’t regular Russians, either. Five years ago, I would have had trouble picking Russians out of an international crowd. Now I can spot the difference between a Russian Mafioso and a Russian oil rig worker from a quarter mile. I can also identify their wives and children. Vinpearl was Mafia as hell. There’s a reason that Dolph Lungren’s character in Rocky IV wasn’t believable as a Russian boxer- 1) his face wasn’t a ziploc bag of lumpy turnips and 2) his facial features weren’t all piled up around his nose like hobos around a barrel fire. Imagine a luxury resort populated by Cro-Magnon, baby-faced, crew-cutted men who carry 50 of their 150 pounds on their gut, each with a pile of wife-meat sporting bleach-blonde Betty Paige wigs. Welcome to my four days on Vinpearl Island.
My room was luxurioser than hell. I can’t even begin to describe how nice it was to have a hot bath. Also: a hot bidet. I don’t even know what bidets are really for, yet. I mean, sure, I bathed my butt-parts in it, but I can’t imagine that people really use them for that. Whenever a lady says, “I’m going to freshen up,” I imagine that she’s doing something arcane with a bidet in another room. If you need to bathe your third eye in Christian baby blood, that’s a sacrifice I’m willing to not be bothered by you making. Especially if it ends in sex. With me.
The shower was nice as hell, too. Huge shower head, hot water as far as my scalded eyes could see and glass walls so any un-knocking maids could viddy well my naked splendor.
The shower head itself was as big as cats. Huge. If you don’t believe me, I have a picture:
That’s a quality shower head. Also, there were no light switches. Instead, by the bedside, they had unnecessary LCD control pads. Not that they weren’t nice or whatever. I also had my own pool and a bed which more resembled a comfy mountain carved from sexy, linen clouds. When you lie down in this bed, you sink into the cottony softness like that scene in Trainspotting with the carpet. Looking up from your blissful sinkhole, you might notice that the fancy painted picture on the wall has its own light!!! And that light? You can turn it off and on with the LCD interface. Fucking space-age shit over here.
Their swimming pools were beautiful and the place was surprisingly empty given that it was a Vietnamese holiday. I took the kids to the Adventure Park and the Water Park. The last time I was there I was with a super fine lady, so this time was less exciting, but it wasn’t bad. Also, I was wearing khaki shorts which are NOT ALLOWED in the waterpark. Sorry. If you want to wear khaki shorts (it’s a color, not a cloth, people), you have to take your business elsewhere, ’cause you ain’t riding on shit, junior. I also rented bikes with the kids. That was weird because they really couldn’t ride them; they hadn’t any experience with riding bikes in open places where they could go fast. They kept forgetting to brake and crashing into stuff, which was awesome to watch.
So, Vinpearl is nice as hell. More than I could ever afford to spend. It’s kind of disheartening that I couldn’t afford to go there again, but I wouldn’t want to so it’s not all that spirit crushing (that ain’t sour grapes, either). I get uncomfortable in really nice surroundings. Because of my upbringing, I’ve always been able to pass socially, but I really don’t feel at home in places like that. I feel like I have to be overly nice to the staff to make up for their smiling subservience. I don’t need to be reminded that I have money all the time. Not only because I don’t have money, but also because I’m not an insecure, classist douche-nozzle.
Check’t: I totally scrumped whilst reverse slumming it:
So… Vinpearl is great. Nice, well-maintained and utterly dissimilar to every where else in Vietnam. If I had rich relatives who wanted to enjoy ‘Nam, I’d recommend that they go there. Everybody else can get ripped off at shitty, roach-sodden hotels like the rest of us schlubs.
I came home and was glad to be in a place that was mine where I didn’t feel ashamed of the crapulence around me. Wait! I forgot: I had to use a coin-operated toilet. It was a little confusing and smelled like a cheap cab, but it did its job. Here’s a photographic narrative:
Spoiler alert: Coin-Operated bathrooms end like The Matrix starts: with a binary choice that is kind of irrelevant.