Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Vietnam - back to the beginning

street peddler taking a rest in streets of Vietnam

Just some of my thoughts upon returning to my place of birth after over two decades. I personally feel a sense of empathy when I witness how people survive the day, whether it be a woman in her 60's carrying 20kgs in the heat of the day or a cyclo peddler sweating with perspiration during the same time. Life still is hard for the many in this developing country, and I was struck by how safe I felt, there was hardly any beggars on the streets as I saw in Indonesia, Malaysia and Bangkok.
People here seem to give anything a go, they are really resourceful with the little that they have, some things are slow, unplanned, unstructured and there are opportunists everywhere.

I had a great 3 weeks travelling through the country with my friends, discovering the coast of Vietnam in Hue, Da Nang and Ho An (was one our favourite places due to the rustic architecture and shops). My top 3 foods were the mini banh xeo (off the street-Saigon) Fruit-fed suckling half wild pig (Tay Ninh farm) and the Hue specialty - lotus shoot salad (Hanoi)

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