War Crimes, Bad traffic and teenage shops

Trip Start Jul 13, 1988
1
24
37
Trip End Jul 03, 2010


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Flag of Vietnam  ,
Sunday, August 26, 2007

Since Im running out of time I wont make a detailed account about Vietnam. We arrived there by bus from Cambodia and the ride took 5-6 hrs
including customs and border crossing. It gave us a chance to see the Cambodian
country side;lots of strawhuts, cows and farmers working in the
ricefields.
 
We liked Saigon and saw lots of tourists here, went out and partied one
night, did plenty of shopping and had a great Spa experience for cheap. But
there are a few points I need to make about our Vietnam trip:
 
1. The traffic was some of the worst Ive ever seen, and there are a million
motorbikes, everyone drives like crazy and there are hardly any traffic lights. AND they dont stop
for anything. I dont think we would stop traffic if we walked down the street
naked..no joke! They would look but NOT stop. Crossing streets became a very
difficult task. One just had to run, hope for the best and weave in between cars
and bikes.
 
2. Saigon was a shoppers paradise and we found this shopping street that
were for the locals, we didnt see a single tourist in the 7 hrs we spent on this
street! Therefore it was very cheap and the fashion was great. BUT we figured
out after a while that most of the stores were teenage stores. As westerners we
have problems fitting into the regular Asian sizes as it is just imagine the
teenage Asian sizes. Pretty funny experience, I dont ever think I have felt
bigger in my life. Not so funny actually come to think of it...rather
depressing, but our consolation the whole day was that we were just westerners
and nothing wrong with that...just built bigger. This was a blessing in disguise
for our already overweight luggage. I did however end up with some great buys
that were funky and unique. Things were cheap and also brands like Abercrombie,
Hollister, Victoria Secret Pink collection and more are all made in Vietnam so
some stores had stuff that hadnt made the U.S shipping (with the American price
tags and all) only the price here was a tenth of the U.S price.
 
3. We went to see the War Remnants museum (used to be
called museum of Chinese and American war crimes, but name got changed to not
offend Chinese and American
tourists) Having seen this museum, however, I feel that the former name
is much more appropriate. This experience was just as disturbing as the S21
prison and the killing fields,
perhaps even worse since I reside in the U.S. This was just as brutal as what we
saw at S21. It was hard to grasp that the American soldiers did what they did. We saw massacres,
massgraves, killed babies, people pleading for their lives in front of the
american soldiers. There was also a big thing about the Chemical warfare that disfigured people and we saw
plenty of pictures and living proofs of this in Saigon still today. One picture
had a tank of the chemical and the soldiers had written on it: "The purple
people eater" Shocking!! Unfortunately this is probably going on still today in
Iraq.
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