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Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam-Rockin the Last Day

Yesterday was my last day in Ho Chi Minh city, and the last day of travelling before I go home. i wanted to make the most of the day.

First thing I did was walk to the Venerable Thich Quanc Duc Memorial-this was the memorial for the Buddhist Monk who set himself on fire to protest the South Vietnameese President Dinh's persecution of Buddhists. The memorial was touching, and I stood there for a moment-but there wasn't much to see.


I then walked for about an hour. i stopped at a place for some macha tea, (green tea which is delicious). One of the folks working there was learning English, he had his workbook in front of him-so I quizzed him and his wife for a few questions. They we're pretty good.

I then walked to the Jade Pagoda, which was a combination of both Buddhist and Tao faiths, and was supposed to be one of the most spectacular temples in the Ho Chi Minh area (according to Lonely Planet). Actually, when looking for it-I passed it by at first. I didn't think I saw it-but I did. And it just wasn't that spectacular. It was a two story building (i think) with the usual dragons, horses, Buddha, and menacing looking figures. It just did nothing-maybe I have seen too many Buddhist temples. I was quite far from the hostel-so I continued walking-got caught in the rain. I passed by a car dealer, with used cars from dealers in the US, and the Notre Dame Cathedral, which beautiful but closed due to renovations. I got to the nice part of the town, and found a shopping mall, with my favorite overseas store where I have never bought anything-called Pull and Bear. They usually have all sorts of weird Americana stuff, like Florida/California things-but I didn't see anything I wanted (once again).


I then wanted to go to the Bitexco fianncial tower, to the top floor-but it was a little early-so i went back to the hostel and took a nap. (It was a 20 minute walk to the hostel, roughly).

After roughly 1 1/2 hours of nap and reading-I walked back to the tower, and went to the 52nd floor. Actually, the observation deck is on the 48th floor-but if you buy a drink you can go to the bar on the 52nd floor-for roughly the same price as the observation deck with no drink-and that is what I did.

The tower is like an office tower in most big cities-big name retailers at the lower floors-security guards ushering me to the correct elevators. I took the fast elevators up to the 52nd floor, where I was greeted by well-dressed hostesses, and they showed me a table near the window. (all the ones by the window we're taken). i paid approximately $12 for a mixed drink ( A beer was less-but It was my last day travelling, and I felt like celebrating). Soft jazzy music was playing in the background, and the lights of Ho Chi Minh City we're shining. I felt out of place in my shorts and Hawaiian shirt-I felt like I should have wearing a nice jacket-except everyone else was dressed like slobs as well. Mostly tourists from hostels I assume.

i stayed for about 1/2 an hour-I met a Taiwanese guy traveling alone and we talked for a while. He just graduated from school, and was visiting his sister who was living here.

I then walked out, bought a few shirts at a market, and sneakers (I lost one somewhere along my travels). and walked along the bar district back to the hostel. Along the way I stopped for dinner at a roadside cafe with vermicelli and spring rolls. On the bar street, I watched a far breather, and his playing with a snake.


Posted by DavidPearlman 18:06 Archived in Vietnam

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