Spoonball's Guestbook



30th October 2013

Incredible!
From Blog: Thai-ing One On!
30th October 2013

January is the "COOL" month in BKK! A private cruise on the Chao Phraya River c/w a nice cold Chang Beer ... Priceless!
From Blog: "Wat" Not
29th October 2013

One wonders why there are not more fires in Hanoi? Crazy Wiring situation.
From Blog: Follow Your Star
29th October 2013

I thought Ho Chi Minh's body appeared to be that of a 6' tall man. Ho was 5' tall and 128lbs. Even the Vietnamese were laughing (which angered the guards). I figure that 4-5 generations of prison warders living around the Hanoi Hilton enthu
siastically tortured prisoners for the French 1890-1940, the Japanese 1941-45, the French again 1945-54 and finally the North Vietnamese 1954-1975. It's a small world.
29th October 2013

The driver's hat says it all ... weather-wise. The French made Hanoi their Colonial Capital, because of the cooler weather and the ability to grow temperate plantation crops.
29th October 2013

Toured there in 2010. So much for a "Poor" HCM. He lived luxuriously in Hanoi. I wonder why the US didn't bomb this area?
29th October 2013

I toured here in 2010. HCM lived well in Hanoi. I wonder why this palace wasn't bombed by the US. Possibly Westmoreland thought he would occupy it?
29th October 2013

The ex-French colonies of Vietnam, Laos & Cambodia have really good Baguettes available everywhere. I always travel with a few cans of tuna on my local bus tours. You can always find a beer, the Tuna is back up. Baguettes are usually ve
ry good.
From Blog: China Beach
29th October 2013

NB: Proper ladies don't have uncovered shoulders in public in S/E Asia. Grown men don't wear shorts ... according to my Aussie Expat Friend who lived in Saigon for 20 years. He is right. Same procedure in Thailand my Thai GF says.
29th October 2013

Nuthin' but organic in Vietnam!
29th October 2013

the farther south you go, the higher the percentage of Catholics ... up to 70% in the far south of Vietnam. Near 40% in Saigon.
29th October 2013

The Brits abandoned their Indian Colonies which were far more valuable than Indochina. I've often thought that it is likely the French Govt would have closed down it's then Colonial Indochina Empire. It was never a paying proposition. Yes a
few rubber 7 tobacco plantation Owners and Opium Exporters made money, but they would have soon succumbed to offshore competition. We can thank the Japanese for destabilising China, Vietnam, Malaya & Burma. This resulted in the appalling waste of lives in Vietnam.
29th October 2013

You are right about the Vietnamese Economy. They are just now bringing in the Oil from the Offshore Oil Industry into Saigon refineries. I met Canadian & Aussie Offshore Oil Engineers in Vung Tau. Some have been there for 10-15 years. T
he big problem is that it is tough to collect Income Taxes, which then can be used for Infrastructure enhancement. Same problem in Thailand. Few of the locals in my Thai Village ever pay any taxes. Only Gasoline is taxed. Foreign Investment is hampered by Local Ownership problems. All S/E Asian Countries have a phobia over foreign ownership of land. Only foreign companies can own land and even then probably must have a local partner, who usually does very little for the business. Local expats tell me .. rent, rent and rent again! That way you can always pack up and move on to new ventures.
29th October 2013

Nov-Mar are foggy months in Hanoi. I went there Jan 1, 2010. The weather was similar to your experience. That is one reason Hanoi wasn't flattened during the war. The weather was too lousy for bombing 4 months per year, as the French and US
found out. I went from 35C Bangkok => 15C Hanoi => 35C Saigon. Amazing weather change!
29th October 2013

I have never seen so many scooters on a road! Truly amazing!
29th October 2013

I also had to buy some heavier clothes in Hanoi. I was too cold. My hotel rooms were also chilly; but they supplied extra blankets so I was OK sleeping.
From Blog: Follow Your Star
29th July 2013

Are you really so geographically challenged that you think Vietnam is like 'South Pacific' which is set on an an island four and a half thousand miles away ? Much of your blog confirms the insular nature of American travelers and it's reall
y putting me off traveling with Tauck.
11th June 2013

Love this blog.. I feel like I know far better what to expect. I will admit I am a bit apprehensive.. A Million Thanks for such great information and your commentery is delightful
11th June 2013

Africa is wondrous. You get such a sense of being part of a global world. The animals are beautiful. The people are so intriguing. It's all so different and all so worth it. It's a life changing experience. Enjoy. (Thanks for your nice
comments about my blog.)
8th February 2013

So enjoyed your blog and agree with all of your suggestions on the tour. We could have skipped Chou Doc and spent more time in Luang Prabang. Did I tell you our boat got stuck on a sandbar in the middle of the Mekong rive at lowtide? It
took an hour to get moving again and then when we arrived in Phnom Phen the port was closed due to the kings death so we had to disembark on a hill covered with cow patties. It was a grandtime though. I have done a blog of my own but it was soo frustrating as I lost many of my entries and then had to re-type them. Thanks again for sharing!
From Blog: Homeward Bound
3rd February 2013

We are enjoying your posts. Thank you for keeping us in your travels. We are scheduled on the Oct. 27th, 2013 tour. I see another person posting is on that same tour (Hello!) As a Vietnam Veteran, I would like to know how much time do you
spend at the Hanoi Hilton and museum? I do not want to feel rushed and may travel there the day early to take it all in. What is your opinion...
3rd February 2013

We met veterans while traveling who were there for a special vet tour sponsored by the VFW. They spent the better part of a day at the prison. We spent maybe 90 minutes there so if you want to spend a lot of time, a day ahead would be goo
d. Much of the prison cannot be toured; it's been converted to other uses. A day ahead would also help you overcome some of your jet lag.
3rd February 2013

We are booked on the Oct. 27th tour. We will be flying out of LAX. Any chance you would send me the contact info from the parties in your group from the Los Angeles area? We live in Thousand Oaks.
From Blog: Follow Your Star
28th January 2013

Thanks for all for your nice comments, Great to hear from all my friends, including those we have met along the way on our travels. Stay in touch!
From Blog: Homeward Bound

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