A Travellerspoint blog

Ho Chi Minh

13th June

sunny 34 °C

Back to Ho Chi Minh, think J was weirded out by all the staring. I was a little too at times. Treid to go back to My Home, but it was full so instead stayed at Tam Anh? a bit furthew down the alley, What a pleasant old lady who worked there and she kept bringing up lovely coffee. Shame the electricity stopped again.

Finally got a table at the cheap bar on our last night. What a bargain 12,000 Dong for a carton of beer which you got 4 glasses from. The night before J had been with the particularly attractive girl from one of our regular hangouts.

Posted by mm1 02:12 Archived in Vietnam Comments (0)

My Tho

13th June

rain 33 °C

What an experience. In two days in My Tho I saw 5 other westerners. James saw 1. That's how much we stood out. At times it was amusing and even nice to be stared at by everyone, young and old, walking or on transport. But at times it really did get a little tiresome and strange.

In the extention to the large bar where we watched England struggle to a disappointing 1-1 draw vs the US, we were like celebrities when we played pool. The kids watched on amazed, the cockier ones giggling and making comments. The older guys laughed when I had to duck to avoid a wall mounted fan, or marvelled at the size of J's flip-flops which prompted one guy to try them on! We had a few interesting games of doubles with them, as they didn't speak a word of English and we can't speak a word of Vietnamese and seemed to be making up the rules as they went along! Was hard to find anywhere to eat where anyone could speak English or where we could understand the menu, too.

Definitely the most random place I've ever been to. Well worth interspersing the 'touristy' areas with visits to places like this, to explore the other, more difficult side of travelling when there is a big language & culture barrier. The funny thing is, Lonely Planet says this is more 'touristy' than some of the other destinations in the Mekong Delta so * only knows what they're like!

Posted by mm1 06:18 Archived in Vietnam Comments (0)

Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam.

6th June

overcast 32 °C

Arrived in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam after quite long bus journey after which I had a particularly sweaty backside. First impressions not good. The roads are nearly impossible to cross as they're constantly packed and ofter quite wide, there is the usual hassle from touts/moto guys etc and English doesn't seem to be spoken as widely as in the other countries.

Visited the ? palace and then the war remnant museum. It was another sad & sombre experience much like visiting Tuol Sleng and the killing fields in Cambodia. Horrific injuries, deformed children and horrible suffering was everywhere and looking at some of the pictures it was again hard to hold back the tears (although thankfully I managed to do so!) Found a few decent bars to go to at night, too. J notched number 10 for the trip last night, can't blame him, she was lovely!

Got robbed after quite a heavy one when we met a great guy from Indonesia. Was heading home via the 24 hour shop when 2 girls on a moto offered a 'massage'. We politely declined, but upon leaving the shop they had done a full circle around the side alleys and ended up following us down our alley. The girl groping me asking to massage was horrible and looked drugged/drunk even in my inebriated state. Somehow she managed to worm my wallet and phone out of my pocket before jumping back on her accomplices' moto and speeding off. I didn't even notice until we were back in the room. What a prat - I lost a phone (albeit a cheap one) and about 2 million dong.

Posted by mm1 01:27 Archived in Vietnam Comments (0)

Phnom Penh

1st June

sunny 34 °C

A happier day today, as I met a couple of the girls from the green frog to go bowling. I managed to win 1 out of 3 games. J stayed in bed, but came later and we subsequently lost 3-0 at pool to them! Later, Nigh went to work but Maly joined us at Kfc and said she would like to walk along the river as it's very beautiful and she doesn't always get chance. We were happy to and it was indeed very relaxing & serene. Interesting as always, too, to watch people go about their everyday lives, men playing football with their children, families and friends just sitting by the riverside talking and some random exercising!

We entered a pool 9-ball tournament with a priza of 25 dollar bar tab for the winner and 10 for the runner-up. 8 people played at 3 dollars each. I lost 2-0 in the first round to both some good play and extraordinary luck, including control of the white being lost on one shot, only for it to cannon into the 9-ball and send it in! J lost 2-1 against a guy he really should have beaten. He had a very straightforward short-range shot at the 9-ball into a corner pocket, but missed and ended up losing the next frame to a fluke too. The frame he won came when they were on the 9-ball near the middle pocket and the other guy potted the white, giving J ball in hand!!

Inja & Chiva again came to meet us. Was nice to see Inja again and although she went crazy at the end (or sometimes before) of each night, she is good fun to be with and very sexy to boot. They both went a little crazy when Maly tried to call J and then me after he didn't pick up. Luckily, she said she wanted to speak with J so that helped a little.

Posted by mm1 20:53 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

Phnom Penh

27th May

sunny 36 °C

Left Sihanokville for Phnom Penh, knackered on the bus as usual due to a lack of sleep.

Seems to be quite polluted here, as it was in Siem Reap. First hotel we checked out was pretty grubby and they wanted 12 dollars a night, so we kept walking. Came to the Dara Reang Sey hotel, where the guy who welcomed us in wanted 17 dollars a night. J mainly with me chipping in managed to get him down to 13 dollars. The rooms are pretty nice, too.

Found a couple of decent bars, one in particular where we have had some fun on a couple of occasions with the gorgeous bar staff in there. Quite drunk on the 28th as the proclaimed last drink by both of us actually lasted for about 5 drinks, inclding one with a Swedish gy called Eric, who insisted we visit northern Laos despite never having been there himself!

Visited a shooting range which was real fun, although both I and J were shite and couldn't hit either coconut with 25 bullets each! J had a go on automatic setting too. Then went to the notorious killing fields were so many innocent people died between 1975-79. It was a very interesting but sombre experience that almost had me in tears a couple of times.

Next day we visited Tuol Sleng or s-21, where people were held & tortured before being taken to the killing fields. Originally a school, this place was turned into an unimagineable place of horror as Khmer Rouge used the former classrooms and various weaponary to keep captive, beat and kill thousands of innocent people. Again I was almost in tears looking at the mugshots containing sad faces staring back at me, their hopes and future gone. It was quite eerie to think that we were in rooms that only a little over 30 years ago were used for such evil purposes.

Posted by mm1 19:42 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

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