Blogs from Ho Chi Minh City, Southeast, Vietnam, Asia - page 223


Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 12th 2006

Back at the Go2 bar- sippin on a Saigon... My guide book referred to Saigon as quaint- and I'm not so sure- I have an incling to refer to this city as crazy or bipolar- which come up severely short- The best word I can conjure is adolescent- I will save you the barfy stages of life metaphor- suffice it to say-(I haven't met a teen that I could refer to as quaint) This city is every bit as involved in the business of brothels and the like- (as Cambodia and Thailand) except it is a lot less open and admitting of the fact- until you get in a taxi- Driving in Saigon This is incredibly disorienting- as there is no change in elevation-and every street has buildings four to five stories- so it all blurs ... read more
mas soup
Restaurant Origami

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 12th 2006

Travel over the last few days has involved various extremes which has seen us leave the comfort and sun of Nha-Trang for the rain and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City. We stayed in Nha Trang for about 5 days of beach bumming fun, and thoroughly lived it up. After the effort it took to get there we settled into a nice routine of lie-ins, sunbathing, beach footy and fine dining. The best day there (and my personal favourite) involved a very leisurely morning on sun loungers, sipping beers, eating mangoes and developing melonomas. After an inexpensive and tasty lunch in a bar full of package tourists (who'd paid through the nose for their holidays; Idiots) I decided to have a go at Wakeboarding. It cost a fairly expensive 16quid but was worth every penny. Like ... read more
Board Stupid
Nha Trang Coast

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 11th 2006

The last few days in Ho-Chi-Minh-City have been very educational and emotional. After visiting both the War Remnants Museum Reunification and the Cu Chi Tunnels I feel that I have a better understanding of the struggles faced by all men who fought in the Vietnam Conflict. The War Remnants Museum was filled with pictures and stories about what men and women faced on all sides of the conflict, and it was very moving to see the dedication that both the north and the south had for their cause. The Cu Chi Tunnels are where the Viet Cong lived for 5 years underground after the napalm campaign killed on the trees and plants. In addition to climbing through the tunnels, we ate a traditional meal of tapioca root and nuts (yuck!), saw the various kinds of traps ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 10th 2006

Vietnam was not on my original plan of this trip but after a few weeks of travelling solo in Europe, reality kicked in and I was tired of the constantly planning things (of when to go, what to eat, where to stay...) and decided to switch gear and changed my travel direction. Instead of visiting (in depth) South Korea (which I had not planned much) I opted to go to Vietnam and visited friends where I did not need to plan anything at least of where to stay. So after I landed at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho chi minh city (formerly Saigon), I was met by a good friend from high school and I was escorted to the seperated customs section and cleared for entering to the country. Got my backpack at the ... read more
a catholic church in saigon
a millitary stadium
mooncakes for sale

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 9th 2006

Back in Nam It occured to me today- that I can legitamately utter that phrase Sadly when entering Vietnam I had to depart with my tickle me elmo. He was keeping me company on my long journey from home- laughing at my stupid jokes- commiserating with me when I couldn't speak the native tongue- and elmo just laughed it off when I punched him, even took it well when I accidently ran him over. I will miss the soothing laugh. But as per my agreement on my Visa and entry into vietnam, along with my drugs and guns, I had to do away with "any children's toys that promoted unhealthy social development" Ah yes Vietnam. But alas, I have something to fill the void AS most cliche utterers will tell you (I'm no different) money doesn't ... read more
Rappin on the rooftop
Pagoda Palace

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 8th 2006

Hi everyone, This week has been a completely crazy one! To cut a rather long story short I have been offered a SUPER job in Hong Kong and after thinking about it for a few days I have decided to take it. Let's just say that I have annoyed a lot of people by doing this and those people know who they are and I am sorry! I love living in Vietnam and believe me when I tell you, I would not leave unless it was something BIG! I have had so much to do this week, visa forms, school forms, photocopying, hundreds of e-mails, passport photos and the list goes on! I am not even excited. I'm relly quite scared! I'm going to move to a new country, to a new job and I'll be ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 6th 2006

05/09/06 - 06/09/06 Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) From the moment entering the Immigration Hall in Vietnam in seeing the huge red flag and gold star, I couldn't help feeling a strange feeling of uncomfortable nervousness. Just the thought that I was in a country that I really couldn't be sure about if something went wrong. Of course the Visa in my passport read 'Socialist Republic of Vietnam' and the red of the flag just keeps screaming to your brain - Communist country! Roads were chaos after a small stint back on European soil and motorbikes were seen laden with TV's, fridges in fact anything far too big that you would possibly consider moving on 2 wheels. Our first trip, after settling into the town was out to the Cu Chi tunnels. We stopped beside ... read more
Rubber Plantation
Rambo Jen
Citizen Propaganda Board

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 5th 2006

So we have finished our tour in 'Nam, did some patrolling, sniping, infiltration of native population and recon of key sites. Although we didn't know exactly what to expect of Vietnam, mostly we'd heard good things, so we were looking forward to our tour of duty. It was pretty good but - and we suppose it had to happen after 10 months of travelling - we came away a little underwhelmed. Feels like we had similar and better experiences elsewhere in SE Asia. the weather played a big factor in our enjoyement and it seemd to rain more than not - even though the Lonely Planet AKA The Book of Lies told us we should be fine sticking to certain places. Perhaps we got off on the wrong foot, and, as they say, first impressions last ... read more
Old men chilling outside
Ho Chi Minh Returns
Rua Thap

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 5th 2006

Many stories have been told about Vietnam, most of them had to do with the war, but mine has to do with the people and the progress of the human spirit to overcome tragedy and adversity and shine through. Well, after this Hemingway-ish intro, let me tell you about my tour in 'Nam. It all started many years ago for me, and my ever incresing interest in Vietnam and the war fought there by the USA; so, I decided to go there myself and see how it was. I was living in Korea at the time, so the flight there was only 5 hours and pretty cheap. You have to apply for a tourist Visa in advance, which my travel agent did through the Vietnamese embassy in Seoul. Visa and plane ticket in hand I made ... read more
Buddhist Temple Interior
Main Market
Presidential Palace

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 5th 2006

Evening all, How's things? Hope you're all fine and/or dandy. I must say I've been rather tired coming into the final week of my time in Vietnam, and am feeling a little burnt out. I find these short business stints rather difficult I guess because there's so much to deliver whilst you're here, so it's a bit non-stop. You do have to take breaks though, otherwise you will go postal and do something drastic, like I dunno, clean out the mini bar of its contents and then dance around your hotel room to kitsch 80s pop (not that I did that of course....). That being said, I'm feeling better this monday evening after taking the day off for a public holiday here. It kind of took me back to the nostalgia and more halcyon days of ... read more

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