Ý and Tiên, Street-side Venders

Nha Trang Travel Blog

 › entry 68 of 94 › view all entries
Ý and Tiên's
 

Most afternoons I try to stop at Ý (pronounced ee) and Tiên's sidewalk market. Their rolling cabinet and display case is stocked with a small variety of snacks, cigarettes, bottled, canned, or cartoned drinks, and other assorted items. It's chained to a light pole next to a Sacombank ATM machine in front of the 52 Tran Phu Hotel (not to be confused with the 62 Tran Phu Hotel mentioned earlier and just down the street). Kid-sized plastic chairs and tables are set on the sidewalk as needed. An adjacent alleyway leads to the Navy Club where clean restrooms are available. That, and being across the street from the beach on Tran Phu, makes a fine perch for a couple of afternoon beers.

 

An occasional guest at the 52 Tran Phu Hotel buys a beer or water to take to their rooms but most are local customers who sip coffee and tea.

One of the regulars
A glass of tea is commonly served along with Vietnamese coffee. 

Several of the regulars speak a bit of English which makes for interesting discussions and a fun way to learn a few Vietnamese words.

 

Ý tends the cart all day; Tiên, when he can. Last year he worked with Easy Riders doing motorbike tours to Dalat in the Central Highlands until a broken arm put him out of a job. Now he is a driver for Nha Trang Taxi. Their daughters are 8 and 12. Several times Ý had me watch the store while she went to pick up the youngest. I have yet to sell a water or beer to a traveler (although I once sold a boomerang to a German tourist at the Mt. Ebenezer Roadhouse in central Australia but that's a different story).

Haulin' ice
As for coffee, they would just have to wait for Ý.

 

She uses ice to mix Vietnamese coffee or tea, and in my case, to keep the beer cold. Last year she put it in my mug and handed me a warm can or bottle but now owns a good sized orange and white plastic cooler. For a kilo block of ice, she paid 1,000 Ðong to a delivery man pedaling a black cyclo fitted with a pick-up truck-type cargo bed. The driver chipped from a larger ice block which he kept covered with a white plastic tarp. Both the bicycle rickshaw and his North Vietnamese Army-style helmet would have made the delivery seem fresh from the Ho Chi Minh Trail were he wearing a brown uniform or black pajamas and B.F. Goodrich sandals. It was a rather rare sight for Tran Phu Street, another good reason to hang out at Ý and Tiên's.

 

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Ý and Tiêns
Ý and Tiên's
One of the regulars
One of the regulars
Haulin ice
Haulin' ice
The 8 year-old
The 8 year-old
Cheers!
Cheers!
The Martin 107 at Y and Tiens
The Martin 107 at Y and Tien's
Y and her youngest
Y and her youngest
Tien
Tien
Relaxing
Relaxing
Passing time
Passing time
Gossip
Gossip
Nha Trang
photo by: rotorhead85