Vietnam23 Jan 2007 02:03 am

Hanoi.  So different to Saigon.

This, is where the huge communistic structures appear. Ho Chi Minh’s body, embalmed
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Vietnam20 Jan 2007 01:53 am

Hoi An. Worth a section of it’s own. A jewel in Vietnam where i could easily see myself settling down. 45mins from a city called Danang which has no experience value other than getting lost on a moped with no fuel,no foreign ATM’s and only 11,000 dong in your pocket.

Now a UNESCO worldheritage site, Hoi An used to be one of the most important SE Asian trading hubs in the 16th century and has the architectural influences from Japan and China to match it.

Add to that the French influence – it is just beautiful.

It is mainly known for all of the tailors (show any suit, shirt, jacket, shoes etc.. from any catalog in the world- and they will make a replica for you).

Driving your moped out of town however and stopping a market off of the highway will show you how tourists never leave the town.

Just buying an orange will have a group of locals following you around fascinated at your hairy arms and skin.

Spent Chinese New Year here and was lucky enough to share this experience with them.

Best moment, zooming through mist at 6.30am glimpsing rice paddies poking through.

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Title: HOi-An
Description: In and around Hoi An

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Title: Chinese-New-Year
Description: Spent in Hoi-An, Vietnam

Vietnam13 Jan 2007 01:42 pm

Observation: If you ever want to drop the F* bomb – do it here in Vietnam. When you are locked out of your hotel at 4am, down a dark alley and two prostitutes jump off a moped and are pulling at your limbs not listening to the words ‘no’ ‘goodnight’ ‘goodbye’ ‘leave me alone’; just drop the F- word loudly and watch the speed at which they disapear. It seems to hold an effect which has been lost elsewhere in the world now that the word is so common.

Saigon is a busy busy city. Never seen so many mopeds. Coming from cambodia to this city was a big surprise. Not the socialist asia that you would expect. I went to a club that could have been a top capatilist night-spot in new york.

Here, just outside of Saigon i shot my first and last AK47 – ( despite the opportunity i had a moral issue paying to fire weapons in Cambodia considering the strife they have caused there). I had the opportunity at the old Cu Chi tunnels, that helped the VC defeat the Americans (did you know that Korea were allies in that war also?!?).

Those tunnels… no way would you get me down there again. Looking at my pictures and videos now and knowing what these people as well as the other sides in the war went through – i feel a little shitty that im smiling and laughing so much. That tunnel network should really be a memorial site and treated so with according respect.

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Title: Saigon
Description: Hectic mopeds and VC tunnels

Getting out of Saigon was a problem, as it was leading into the chinese new year that Vietnam share with China and all the trains planes etc..were booked out. Nothing that a good old fashioned bribe couldnt fix though ;-)