Prequil to tension….. part 1 … and random photo’s

Some handsome guy holding a snake

To my amazement, my readership that was up 50 percent last week has now increased to up 100%.  It seems to have spiked up on my birthday of all things… A welcome birthday present. Thank you everybody….. As long as you show interest in what I have to say, I will do my best to keep a blogging….

This morning I woke up to a grey and breezy day. “It looks cold outside” my instincts are telling me. (A day like this back home would be miserable, even in summer) But guess what?? It is not cold, or even cool. It is perfect, just a little showery and grey. The light showers feel good and even driving in it makes me want to go shirtless, however, I better lose those pounds I put on first. I just had a Russian drive up on a brand new motorcycle and ask how much for a room for one month. I gave him a price of 260.00 for a smaller room and he stormed out complaining about how expensive. Huh….. He went next door to ask and ended driving off in a huff without a room. Wow!! What is he looking for?? There are 8 dollar a night hotels available, but I often wonder how they can even meet expenses. Even at our prices, there is very little profit in it even with all the rooms full. We will have to rely in the future on offering interesting tours, selling cold drinks, and maybe food to supplement our income. That may be a big part of why many of the hotels here operate by the hour. Even as I write, there is a young couple here wanting to rent a short term room. Sigh!

Another topic suggested was about prejudice. Does it exist and what shape does it form. Well I can tell you that there are some very

A fisherman

 deep and nasty prejudices here, but not directed at who you might think. I will speak about how people feel in the centre and south of Vietnam. The only northerners that I know personally are a bit young to have wartime experiences, but do have experience of moving to the south. I will sit and talk with Khuyen about how she perceives the north’s attitudes.

I guess it could also be Mai’s story continued

When I was here in the lat 90’s I was always referred to as “ong mi” which means American. To me it seemed that they new of very few western countries, so calling me American, and was the best that they knew. I decided to tell a group that I was Canadian and not American. This effort got a reaction that I was totally not prepared for. They became cold to me and no longer paid me the attention I was getting before. Hmmmm curious. I discovered later that as a Canadian I was grouped in with the United Nations. Why would that be bad? Well according to the older people I spoke with here, The Americans at least tried to help!! It was pressure from the United Nations that helped push the Americans to withdraw. That withdrawal was devastating to the center and south. Most of the adults that I have encountered here fondly talk about the Americans and the fun the people had interacting with them, and the countries that stood against the Americans with the united nations resulted in the loss of freedom and created the heart rendering plight of the boat people, of who my Wife was one. That feeling has mostly disappeared now, however, The Americans are still thought of as the best and even the children’s clothing bears slogans and art from the USA. 

Most of the prejudice here is directed ant former occupiers, or people who look

Snakes and bugs in a bottle

 down on them. I have has no problems with any culture here, however, I have witnessed some Vietnamese people treated quite poorly. I have questioned hotel receptionists and Store clerks and have discovered that the French are not very well liked. Partially from the history of occupation, but mostly because they perceive that they are being looked down on, as if barely being worthy of speaking to. (Their words, not mine) There is a general consensus that the Russians are

looks good

the same. Huh… I do not know….. The French and Russians I have met have been very nice so far. I have seen no evidence that there is prejudice towards Africans, East Indians, Australians, Canadians, Most Europeans, or Spanish. There is a fear of Arabs that cover themselves here, but probably just from lack of understanding. There is even a small Muslim population that is accepted. There is a general but not a hated prejudice towards the Chinese and Japanese, probably due to the history of occupation but the deepest hatred and prejudice that remains to this day is against their own people in the north. In Saigon it is most evident, but It affects even us here….. To be continued

Picking up the family

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Owee

Tour designer and Guide specializing in off the beaten track tours of Vietnam

5 thoughts on “Prequil to tension….. part 1 … and random photo’s

  1. I happen to have very different views on this subject.I just would like to say that the americans did not belong there …never should have been there and the outcome would have been the same with less casualties and no resentment to the south siding with the americans….the war would have been over in 1 or 2 years, instead of 10 years. Everyone would have been better off. Americans are part of the united nations…a big part. Also the war is over and i think people just want to get on with there lives. ( Edited and re-worded to “Do you think blogging on this subject is safe?”) Maybe i am being paraniod but would hate to see trouble in paradise. I don’t expect this to reach the blog…just think inapropiate topic. As you know the government is welcoming the Viet Q with open arms…come back home. Things are better and will continue to get better for the vietnamise people. I LOVE VIETNAM!

    1. Inapropiate…. No.. I reader asked and I have answered as honestly as I can. You are right… The government here is doing alot to make all things better, including opening up trade and tourism to the world. The topic i wrote on is not political or religious, but only a snapshot of what I hear and see in the people here. And of course, unless too personal or offensive, your opinion is welcome.

  2. Vietnamese that I know here in the states….Viet Kieu can be spotted a mile away in Viet Nam and are treated differently mostly because they were lucky enough to get out and “make it” and do look down on their home bound counter parts as “nha quay”. The Vietnamese tend to think Viet Kieu’s are uppity! The northern “carpet baggers” also fall into another category….taking advantage of their fellow country men……so much for a united country!

  3. Interesting views, I have a couple of Vietnamese friends here where I live who were also fortunate to have been able to get away and come to America. Different families – they don’t know each other but both have told me they get treated coldly when they go home to visit. One of the friends told me she must have developed a southern accent to her Vietnamese because people know right away she does not live in Vietnam.

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