This is a story about finally finding true love in Vietnam.
Two years ago, me and my brother Lachlan Brown were here in Saigon — both single, both alone. Since then, we’ve lived very different lives and had different experiences. Now, one of us isn’t single anymore and the other one has found true love in an unconventional way.
I shared our stories in the video below.
A quick warning: This isn’t your typical story about finding love. It covers a range of themes including finding love while traveling, using Tinder and our technology-driven consumerist society where Tinder dominates our dating lives.
Watch the video below to find out more about our journeys. If you can’t watch it right now, you can read the transcript below:
Transcript: “Finding true love in Vietnam”
[00:00:13.27] Justin: This is a story about finally finding true love in Vietnam. That’s my brother Lachlan, I’m Justin. Two years ago, we were here in Saigon, both single, both alone. Now, one of us isn’t single anymore. And the other one has finally found true love. I’m going to tell you about it in this video. Stick with us.
This is not going to be a typical story about finding love. This is going to be something where I share some brutal truths about what I’ve encountered in two people’s journey to find love in Saigon.
Me and my brother, it’s very different story with different outcomes but i think that we’ve learned some very important lessons at the same time. Stick with this, we’re going to go for coffee at our favorite espresso place right now. I’m going take you to journey, and I’m going to share some of these brutal truths.
[00:01:30.21] Lachlan: now we are going to one of our favorite coffee shops in the Japanese area in Saigon — come and join us.
[00:01:38.10] Justin: so bro I know that two years ago we were both, well a year and a half ago, both of us two single guys in Saigon. What was your life back then?
[00:01:49.28] Lachlan: That was great, living the single life and meeting new people, being free, doing whatever I want, it was good times.
[00:02:14.19] Justin: Totally agree with you about single life in Saigon. It’s given me a real sense of possibility, a sense of freedom, like I can meet a lot of different people. This city has an incredible vibrancy to it and I find the people here are so open. They want to meet new people. They want to meet foreigners, it’s been a really amazing journey being single in Saigon. So I guess in my case after being single for a long time here in Saigon with the whole sense of limitless opportunities that you can always meet someone new so quickly, I realized that I was getting regular dopamine hits by meeting new people and what I was gaining an opportunity I was sacrificing in the ability to actually get to know someone at a deeper level to form a deep and meaningful connection. I realized that I’ve gone a little bit overboard and it was time to top, take stock, spend time on my own so the amount of dating that was happening in Saigon started to slow down. That’s been good.
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[00:03:33.26] Lachlan: Just got my coffee it’s very good, bro.
[00:03:47.13] Justin: So we’ve had our coffee, done a little bit of work and we’re on our way to a bar. It’s actually my birthday today.
[00:03:54.00] Justin: I have some birthday drinks coming up we’re going to bring you with us. Show you a bit of Saigon the kind of chaos of the streets but I guess the big thing I learned was that it was time for a change, a mindset shift, and I think my brother you can see him down the end there waiting for his bike. He experienced something similar as well, and we both started to create a massive change in our lives. I feel like it’s been a big transformation up to now. So I guess what I learned is that Saigon is an incredibly fast-paced city, it’s so dynamic, it’s almost like the way the traffic works is like the heartbeat of the city. The pulse of the city; it’s fast. There’s not many rules, you can do what you want, zigzag around everything and what I had to do was consciously slow down. I didn’t need to go out so many times all these new people; I needed to take stock and spend a little bit more time with myself, with my own thoughts, my own imagination, my own dreams; and I started to really get to know what I wanted in life and it caused me to be much more selective, have much more discrimination in how I spent my time, but wasn’t really about women anymore. Everything became much more about me and I think that my brother had a very similar experience and it resulted in two different outcomes for us. One of us is still single and the other one has a girlfriend in Saigon. I’m on my way to the bar for my birthday drinks with my brother and another very special person. You’re going to meet them both very soon.
[00:05:49.26] Justin: I’m heading into “The Deck”. It’s one of my favorite bars for a few Sunday afternoon cocktails. Check it out, it’s absolutely beautiful. Wait for the sunset as well. Absolutely love this place. So I’ve arrived at The Deck, I’m waiting for my brother to arrive. He’s taking a quick nap and I was thinking about what’s the real problem with dating in modern-day society. You see, I think we live in a technology-driven consumerist society. The technology we’ve created, all of these apps like Facebook and Google and Twitter and tinder, especially they’re always demanding for our attention, they’re sending us notifications non-stop, they’re designed so that you’re constantly being given new information and being presented — in Tinder’s case, with new people, they want you to be addicted to the app to keep on coming back in to keep on swiping right, swiping left or swiping right, matching with someone, and start chatting. And what it gives you is that dopamine hit, that rush of excitement about meeting someone new. It’s technology-driven but I feel it extends more broadly into society where we’re being encouraged to consume more. But the fundamental problem is that we’re being told nonstop by these technology apps, by media companies, by advertising, by the creators of products, that we are not enough the way we are. That we should not be satisfied with this present moment. That we should always reach for more. Those are the pressures we’re facing all the time and it’s so obvious when it comes to dating. And I realize being here in Saigon, an emerging economy, there is just so much opportunity everywhere, I was in a state where I was constantly looking for more. I was always on tinder trying to meet new people. I was never being satisfied with the people I was meeting, with where I’m currently at in life and things had to change. My brother was going through something similar. He had similar realizations so we both started acting differently. We started using tinder differently. We started being much more mindful and conscious with how we relate to other people and the results, I think, have been truly remarkable.
[00:08:01.20] Lachlan: Yeah so like Justin, I was using Tinder a lot — meeting lots of girls, always swiping, having some fun; but I found that I wasn’t really developing any meaningful connections with anyone. I wasn’t really being honest within myself. I felt like I was desiring these short-term connections too much and it didn’t lead to any fulfillment. Now that I’ve changed my, you know, the way I go about things, I feel much more solid, and living life with a bit more meaning.
[00:08:38.14] Justin: Hello, June. Great to see you. You look so elegant.
[00:09:00.24] June: Do I look elegant?
[00:09:05.13] Lachlan: so life has changed a lot for me. A year ago I was using Tinder and not really creating any meaningful connections but now I found a girlfriend and her name is Jess.
[00:09:17.00] Jess: So, we met in Tinder.
[00:09:28.06] Justin: That’s a pretty amazing story for my brother. He’s been living in Saigon, he’s changed his life, and he’s found someone that he’s got a very deep and meaningful connection with, and I love to see it as well. Now for me, I’m still single; however, my life has changed a lot in the last 12 months from adopting a much more considered and mindful and conscious approach to who I’m dating. I was in Melbourne for a while and I met someone really amazing there who I miss right now but I’ve also managed to accept where I’m at in life. I’m living a life in Vietnam, I’m spending time in Thailand, I was in Brazil last month, I’m moving around. I’ve got a very free lifestyle and I’ve decided to really embrace it. I’ve found true love deep within. I’ve got this love for my lifestyle, for the people I’m meeting, for the connections I’m forming. I feel a lot better about myself for it and I don’t any longer feel like I need to find something outside myself. I don’t need to constantly be on the pursuit of love, constantly swiping right all the time to meet someone new. I’m much happier where I am right now and I think life’s a lot better this way. So I found your love in Vietnam in the most unexpected way, thanks so much for watching this video. If you like what you see please hit the subscribe button leave me a comment below, let me know about your experience in finding true love. Have you found it? Have you found it within have you? Found it in the arms of another lover? Let me know in the comments. I’d love to meet you there. Look forward to seeing you in the next video.