Ho Chi Minh City and the Orphanage
Ho Chi Minh City Travel Blog› entry 31 of 46 › view all entries
I knew that I was going to volunteer at an oprhanage during this journey. It was something that I needed and wanted to do at the beginning of February 2008. I wanted to be around children and I wanted to make them happy. And so I researched on the Internet while I was in Pai, Thailand where I found an opportunity that fit my interest - in the south of Vietnam - in Ho Chi Minh City. Because most of my time would be 'working', I only had one day in Saigon before beginning my experience. Lucky me, it happened to be "Tet" - which is the Vietnamese New Years. They celebrate according to the lunar calandar (like the Chinese) - not the solar calandar like us westerners. So, their new years is February 6th - the year of the "Mouse".
Believe it or not, over 3 million people descend up Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) for the two-week long celebration of the new year. This created the most amazing motor-bike chaos that you could EVER imagine. 99% of the overcrowded city uses motor-bikes for transportation. No kidding, crossing the street is like a game of dodgeball. This MUST be where the video game, "Frogger" was invented. I'll try to post a video crossing the street.
After roaming the streets by day and night and actually feeling the pulse of the New Year arriving, I stopped by the orphanage to introduce myself and to get a feeling for what I was in for......