Saturday, October 10, 2009

Days 3 and 4 in HCMC

Tuesday morning we went to Ben Thanh market to try to find some pants for Rebekah as she only has two pairs of pants for the next six months. This was a short trip, however, as the sellers in this market are very high pressure. Both Re and I ended up fleeing for the exit within 10 minutes. We then walked the 2+ miles back to the lunch lady's pho stand. We were a little nervous when we saw that the soup
of the day included some odd sausage(?) and cubes of congealed pig's blood! We both decided that we aren't fans of congealed blood. While the taste isn't bad, the texture is. Other than that, the pho was delicious.
Later, we went to the History Museum. We both thoroughly enjoyed it, I especially liked the Cham relics. The Cham are an ethnic minority in Vietnam and have a unique style to their stone carvings. Re was impressed by stellae that contained both Sanskrit and Khmer writing,
apparently the subject matter concerned taxes, but it was beautifully written. We also were excited to see some portions of stonework from Angkor Wat, it made us even more excited about visiting there later this year.

Wednesday we went on a bus and boat tour to the Mekong Delta. After a two hour bus ride south to the town of My Tho, we got on a boat for a trip to some of the islands in the Mekong River. We saw the homes of some fish farmers that float in the river with their fish pens and visited an island where bee keeping is a popular vocation. We sampled
some honey tea and some banana wine and Re got to wear a boa made of a
real boa constrictor! The snake was about six feet long and looked
very stylish around Re's neck. (I promise we will upload more photos
to our Smugmug site soon). Next we took another boat to an island
where coconuts are the business. We toured a small coconut candy
manufacturer and sampled some delicious candy. Later we had lunch and
walked around a small village on that same island. Finally we took another boat back
to our bus and headed back to HCMC. It was a good day, especially
since our guide was a very fun and nice person.

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