random thoughts

Ho Chi Minh City Travel Blog

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dinner with some new friends
I arrived to Vietnam last Friday and spent the weekend seeing some basic tourist attractions. I was surprised to find that I didn't enjoy it all that much. I don't think I like being a tourist. I love traveling and going to new places, but not to see temples and buy souvenirs. I want to meet people. Really, if you think about it life is all about people. People are important. It was about this time that I also remembered that if you want to make a difference you should start with the people around you. I thought I would start by listening.

I was lucky enough to meet a few locals on this trip and a few foreigners as well. We traded stories and I found that we had a lot in common. They too had hopes and dreams, responsibilities and regrets. They too had loved and lost and were confused about life.
Listening to them connected us, but also highlighted our differences.

Vietnam is run by a communist party, so I was excited to visit and see what that was like. However, I quickly learned that Vietnam was like most other capitalist nations - for better or worst. The economy is growing and some call that a success. The country now has a great challenge. Electricity demand growing 2x GDP and a 09% reserve margin. All this with withering coal supplies, limited government funds and complicated political relationships with Indochina. It is a great responsibility to develop a nation, any nation. I just hope one day we won't regret it.

Things to Remember:
Eating frog with my new Vietnamese and French friends (Trang and Charles)
Trying snake wine, rice wine and coconut wine in Cu Chi
Wandering the tunnels of Cu Chi
Riding on the small bus with Fran
Mass tourism that felt like I was on a production line
Riding on the back of a motorbike
Yummy mango fruit shakes
Bun Ca Thi La - fish and noodle soup
globalodyssey says:
brilliant
after decades of greed and rapaciousness it is the young people around the world who now talk about sustainability, small footprint, living gently, etc...we can only hope that this will build and swell.
i travel to meet people as well...it is the connection that makes travel resonate.
enjoy the ride
Posted on: Oct 15, 2009
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dinner with some new friends
dinner with some new friends
streets of Saigono
streets of Saigono
Lotus flowers
Lotus flowers
me and Fran :)
me and Fran :)
leisure ride in the Mekong Delta
leisure ride in the Mekong Delta
Motorbikes galore!
Motorbikes galore!
City Hall
City Hall
Partying with DJ Ajam
Partying with DJ Ajam
Art Factory
Art Factory
Cao Dai Holy See Temple
Cao Dai Holy See Temple
Transportation around Saigon
Transportation around Saigon
I can fit in the Cu Chi tunnels
I can fit in the Cu Chi tunnels
They opened the tunnels for us wes…
They opened the tunnels for us we…