9:15 AM

Saigon Status

Wow, did you know that becoming a Saigon Customs girl is even harder than you think? Like, Shaolin Monk status is the level you get to before you attempt Saigon Customs status? So, my internship here is sort of like the training period you go through before you go duel some three-headed serpent-cross-bear on an icy mountaintop to prove your worthiness to be here. That means before I am considered "ready" I have to prove myself through a couple of these crazy skill and endurance tests, which I will go through here. I just thought I'd post it for any of you thinking about wanting to be a Saigon girl, sort of like a cheat's guide to the sort of things you might be asked to do. Not for the fainthearted, ladies.

1. Thou shalt unwind
To assist in my development as a properly relaxed and balanced person, each morning I am required to consume seven whole Corona-soaked limes and squirt the juice of what I can't finish into my eyes to prove my dedication to Corona-and-lime cause. Everytime I hesitate, they will tattoo another letter of the Corona label onto my forehead, and so far they've only gotten up to the first "o", which is pretty good, considering most chicks don't make it out of here before "cerveza".

2. Love thy hater

For this one, I was required to write twice-daily love letters to a few of the people on my least-favourite list, then hand deliver them waiting in a prostrate position at the front doors of their houses wearing above t-shirt. Saigon law dictates that this will teach me humility. Then, at the end of my bed, I am required to sleep with A1-sized posters of my haters' faces, because, as the Saigon philosophy goes, this is what will keep me going.

3. Thou shalt cause a sensation wherever thou goestIf you are going to be a Saigon Customs girl, there is no way you are walking out the front door without a whole lot of hustle. Whenever you are out of the studio, you have to take Miss Saigon's iPhone which has all of her work in it, plus a timer. If the right people don't see the folio every ten minutes, the phone will explode, sort of like that bus in Speed if it drops below 50mph. For this reason, I have been known to hustle homeless people, bodega cooks and lollipop ladies, simply because promoting yourself is the Saigon Way.

4. Thou shalt channel thy "inner-chink"

If you don't have "chinky eyes" or one of these amazing t-shirts, then it is absolutely mandatory that you try in any way possible to channel your inner "sexy-fly-chink" anyway. Me, I have been lying awake at night willing my hair rod-straight, and have already begun to dream in Vietnamese. This, apparently, is a sign that my efforts are working.

5.Thou shalt have swagger
As a naive little Australian, I had no idea what the fuck "swagger" was and I guess that's why apparently I don't have any. So, to gain swagger, I am required to walk past a fire station full of hot, bored dudes sitting out front every time I want to go to the Bodega. This is very helpful for gaining confidence and poise. Cedra and Miss Saigon say I'll have at least a little swagger before I leave, but knowing me I'll probably end up accidentally leaving it somewhere, never to be seen again.