Battling Covid 15 days before travelling – Hanoi x Sapa

I was supposed to fly on 9 April for my first diving trip in Krabi, Thailand.

However, on 30 March, I started feeling sick. I had previously been exposed to C+ patients but just never got infected. I thought I had a superbody having eaten with 3x C+ patients but it turns out it was just not the time, yet.

The weekend before I felt unwell, I was just hanging out with my friends and working long hours. “It’s probably just a cold, I can sleep it off,” I thought.

That week was also one of the most intense weeks – there were two award ceremonies in which I was a finalist in, as well as a 24-hour crunch time for Nicholas and myself to submit a proposal for PRCA’s Young Lions Competition.

I pressed on, but still managed to take some time to rest thanks to the team’s support. I remember waking up at 1.30am in the morning, feeling so horrible. After much struggles, I managed to fall asleep and woke up again at 6+am, and this time round when I looked at the ART test kit, there was a smudge. This was a Deja Vu moment, because Tea had the exact same experience…

Finally, at 9+, I took my test again and this time round, a faint second T line appeared.

I had to sit out of one of my award ceremony after an intense 24-hour finalising our plan for the PRCA competition.

But I had my trip coming up! I was confident that with my fitness level, I should have no issue recovering within a week, and that eventually I could make it for Thailand – in my head, I was thinking of the beaches, the sun, and finally diving!

How wrong I was… The next week, I continued feeling really fatigued, and had bad coughs (which I still have today, more than two weeks after testing C+). I knew it was impossible for me to go to Thailand now, as I’d need to take an on-arrival PCR test which is very likely to return a positive result. No way I was gonna spend 10 days in a healthcare facility!

Fate has its way on people. I was desperate to get out of Singapore for my break, and some friends were in Vietnam so I decided to change my plans. I tested C+ for 11 days and finally, managed to test -ve for my pre-departure ART. 🙂

Off I go! It was a relatively easy process travelling to Vietnam – just had to submit a declaration before flying, as well as test -ve for pre-departure test.
Night one in Hanoi in this gorgeous serviced apartment. I’ve been here in Hanoi three years ago for work, so I wasn’t planning to travel around the city much.
Visited this cute post-it cafe after checking out – thanks to Masa’s recommendation! Coconut coffee and a rich cheesecake yum!
Went with this private cabin to Sapa (USD 22) – a longass 6.5 hour journey. It’s quite pleasant honestly, there’s massage inbuilt in the seat, ample space to sleep properly, and a charging port. There’s even a toilet onboard and people were really civil so no crazy shocks whenever I used the toilet.
View from my room – they upgraded me from Deluxe to Executive Suite and the room was HUGE. Also, the staff were super helpful and nice and often chatted with me to see how I was doing. Highly recommend the Pistachio Sapa Hotel if you’re there.

Alrighty, more on Sapa in another post that’s upcoming!

Now to chill before I check-in for my flight to HCM to meet up with the rest of the crew. 🙂


Olivia L.

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