Tuesday, 27 November 2007

Ho Chi Minh City Day 1

I must say that HCMC is a really nice place that surprised me. Well for one thing the food there's pretty good... and rather inexpensive too! Well we arrived at the newly completed Tan Son Nhat International Airport which was spacious and very modern.

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Waiting for baggage at Tan Son Nhat, note that the flowers are real.

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DOH cousin...

First thing u notice on the streets: TONS and TONS of motorcycles. Crazy riders too! Traffic there is bloody scary at first but after a while, u just get used to it. Some people will NEVER be able to cross roads in HCMC as basically u just have to close ur eyes and keep walking at a slow, steady pace across the road and just let traffic avoid u. Nice one...

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Look Ma one hand!

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Hoho right smack in e middle of a busy street, a manual U turn

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See what i mean...

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A slice of life at 9am in the morning

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Ah yess... They still use overhead cabling and this, my frens, is what it looks like.

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Due to the traffic, drivers in Vietnam have developed a whole new driving technique. Right thumb on the horn, left fingers on the lever to flick their lights like crazy. Nice one.

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Alleyway along Pham Ngu Lao (backpackers street) to our hotel

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A snooze on ur motor beside a street anyone?

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Vietnam has BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL flowers! Many beds like that around.

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Dishes @ a hydrant.

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Oh many nice nice fruits too!

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Some banana cake

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Bloody beautiful seafood here in ther market. They prepare it really well by just dunking it into salt water or slapping it on a hot bbq. Simple, fresh food. One of the best.

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The Vietnamese mixed grill noodles that we had. Very fresh and nice with lotsa lotsa basil and mint with a sweet/sour dressing.

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Fish paste grilled around a sugarcane skewer.

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Da pao anyone?

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Nice marinated shallots

The street food there was amazing. The next 3 pics show a wonderfully skilled mother/daughter pair preparing a very very soft 'soon kway' of sorts. Basically steamed rice flour slurry on cloth pulled over pot of boiling water to form a super thin layer of soft rice paper, which is then filled with a meat-bamboo shoot stuffing and rolled up. It was amazing the speed and precision they did it at, especially with the rice paper thingy.
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Haha... Guess what this is.... Pig's BRAINS

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All over the place... Scorpion/snake/lizard wine... Supposedly very good for u...
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FRESH lotus seeds! Sth that's quite hard to find in Singapore already!

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Business in Ben Thanh Market.

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Oh and there're lotsa people who make a living on their bikes. They would roam the streets selling everything from fruits to lighters and do business right in the middle of terrible traffic! Talk about street sales indeed!

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Dad eating waterchestnuts while waiting for mum and aunt to finish shopping.. zzz
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Another street hawker... They do produce wonderful food!

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Street seller again... Bloody strong people! Not easy carrying that load

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Another slice of life moment.

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The street was actually a night market so there were lamps and wires all hanging down from the overhead cables.

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This lady sold us EXCELLENT beancurd with a thick, candied ginger syrup. LOVELY. Street hawker again. We were fortunate enuff to get the last 3 bowls that she had. Although i think she sorta knocked us off for like 2 bowls for 20000VND (arnd S$2) but we were more than happy to give it to her cos of the bloody good tau huey.

Good stuff... and basically that's it for Day 1. Day 2 and Day 3 much more exciting as we head off to city tour and Cu Chi Tunnels (where i almost died).

Sunday, 25 November 2007

Ho Chi Minh City Preview...

Ahhh yes... Finally have the time to blog about Ho Chi Mihn City... And I'm still here! Using some free WiFi at some KFC near my hotel here in Saigon. Beautiful place I must say: nice people, nice food, nice shopping, cheap beer... Hahaha wad else can be better?