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Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City » Cu Chi
November 14th 2007
Published: November 18th 2007
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Miss SaigonMiss SaigonMiss Saigon

Coneheads ?
Monday Nov 12 to Wednesday Nov. 14th

“Good Mornin’ Vietnam! We’ve always wanted to say that. (thank you Robin Williams)

Very hot here, about 33 degrees, and humid (so a very bad hair place, but great for things such as an $18 massage and $6 french manicure---that’s U.S dollars, so even cheaper in loonies)..Note to Michael and Harvey: see how much money we are saving?)

Our base, Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) is in terrible disrepair. The French colonial influences are present, but the heart of the city lies not in it’s architecture, but in the Vietnamese people. They are a lovely, gracious, hospitable people who have suffered much.
A most outstanding feature of HMC is the traffic chaos which is composed of some 2 million mopeds (the main method of transportation) all jumbled in amongst the relatively few cars and trucks and bicycles. Traffic lights are merely a suggestion. Quite a frightening but fascinating experience watching the motorbikes soaring in and out. It’s a wonder there aren’t more accidents. The riders of these bikes, especially the women, wear full face masks (called ai dais) to combat the pollution and fumes. Helmets are rarely seen. On these motor scooters entire families travel with belongings. We counted a family of 5 on one. Picture this: Dad held baby while driving and smoking a cigarette—Mom and 2 toddlers were balanced behind...Don’t try this at home. There are no traffic rules except survival of the fittest.

We visited the famous (or infamous) Mekong Delta, the large fertile growing region (a.k.a. the “Rice Belt”) producing rice, coconut, sugar cane, fruits and fish farms.
The river, known as “the waterway” by the locals, is fed by hundreds of tributaries and canal systems…We canoed down one of the small tributaries in a sampan, (MaryEllen loved this part, being an Algonquin lovin' girl). Later we had a chance to see a family orchard, meet some of the people, and then enjoyed a lunch of Elephant Ear fish.
Lots to buy as we breezed through the jungle markets. Everything seems to cost $1 U.S. (gives new meaning to the term dollar store)
We had a fun evening sailing on a dinner cruise complete with a band and buffet supper.

We've sent you lots of pictures this time, so be sure to press the "next' button at the end of the first photo page to view the last page of the pix. Enjoy.
Thank you everyone for sending in your comments and messages,. We love to hear from you

Off now to Siem Riep, Cambodia, as we say “Dam biet” from Vietnam
Love to you all
xxoo
Lindsay and MaryEllen



Additional photos below
Photos: 33, Displayed: 23


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Snake--No FakeSnake--No Fake
Snake--No Fake

Yes..Lindsay reallly has a new Cobra boa It weighed about 30 lbs and writhed. Brave or what?
Vietnamese ViagraVietnamese Viagra
Vietnamese Viagra

Snake and scorpion oil anyone? Gifts for Harvey and Michael ? (not that they'll need it after our month away!)
That's one fresh fish!That's one fresh fish!
That's one fresh fish!

L. talking to the animals
Elephant Ear FishElephant Ear Fish
Elephant Ear Fish

Correction.... that WAS one fresh fish
Lunch in the MekongLunch in the Mekong
Lunch in the Mekong

Eating the local delicacies
...eating Elephant Ear Fish...eating Elephant Ear Fish
...eating Elephant Ear Fish

It's actually carp, but cuter
and giant "Rice Balls" tooand giant "Rice Balls" too
and giant "Rice Balls" too

About 9 inches in diameter
Beautiful ChildrenBeautiful Children
Beautiful Children

They loved the stickers that we gave them
A very hospitable familyA very hospitable family
A very hospitable family

She loved the Canadian pin we gave her
Can u canoeCan u canoe
Can u canoe

M.E. had the best time in the boat
Who needs Algonquin?Who needs Algonquin?
Who needs Algonquin?

They did a fine J- stroke
Dinner CruiseDinner Cruise
Dinner Cruise

Us with our leaders, Ben and Caroll
Dancing Queens Dancing Queens
Dancing Queens

No princesses here.....The dinner cruise
Perfect night for a cruisePerfect night for a cruise
Perfect night for a cruise

The parade on the water was magical


18th November 2007

Thank you for including me in your blog. I enjoy reading each update. My best friend Gus moved to Hong Kong 4 1/2 years ago and I have never seen pictures until yours. Last year he took a bike tour in Vietnam and said it was an amazing trip loving the children the most. Your pictures bring such life into what you write and joy knowing that you are having a most wonderful time. Did you get a massage? Looking forward to more. Josie
18th November 2007

Do I say goodmorning, afternoon, or evening???? If it's Sunday here, it must be some other day and some other country that you are now in!!!! Great travel blog and amazing photos...what a colourful adventure. You girls look like you are the life of the party.....why am I not surprised!!!!! How do you fit in e-mail?????? Enjoy!!!! xoxox Ruthie
19th November 2007

Nov. 19, 2007 - Lila
Wow! Your travelogues are marvellous and don't you both look great! You will have to write a book when you come home. In the meantime, enjoy, be well, travel safely. Love, Lila

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