Monday, April 7, 2008


To round out the Vietnam saga, the last 2 days were spent in Saigon. For starters, I rarely heard anyone call it Ho Chi Minh City; Saigon seems to be the accepted name. Next, it was considerably warmer there than in Hanoi, as in low to mid-nineties, with some humidity for fun.

The feel of the city is much different than Hanoi. I did not spend as much time there relative to my time in the north. But the impression I had was that Saigon is the LA of Vietnam: spread out in every direction, variable air quality, warm, crazier traffic and more image-conscious than Hanoi. Also appears to have quite a nightlife, in a LA kind of way. And like LA, the city does not seem as deep: what you see is what you get there. There are some interesting older buildings to be found here and there, but they are more rare relative to Hanoi. Of course, it does not help that the section of town the hotel was in highly western, but hey, there it is.

It is here that Bionica and I would part ways: me back home and her to Cambodia for two months. I am very thankful that she invited me on this trip and I'll always remember it. And I strongly encourage anyone reading this to consider Vietnam as a destination; the biggest hurdle is the length of the flight, but it is all easy after that. Besides, only losers go to Hawaii...