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Life Lessons

Create: 04/17/2017 - 11:15
An affluent society in Vietnam

Around 15 years ago, I was sitting on a park bench in Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC). Sensing I was a tourist, a young girl of maybe 13 or 14 years old, in school uniform, approached me. I was initially apprehensive as there was always a kid peddling something on the streets at that time. She spoke very good English.

She: Which country are you from Sir, if I may ask?

Me: I am from Kuala Lumpur. Do you know where that is?

She: Malaysia! I like geography.

She: What is your country's GDP last year?

In The Midst Of Saigon's Crazy Traffic

Create: 03/11/2017 - 16:23

The best way to enjoy Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City is by motorcycle but it comes with a caveat. There were like 7.43 million motorcycles in the city in 2016. You just get pushed along helplessly in an endless sea of two wheelers.

A couple of hours ago, I had just jumped off an inter country/cross border bus from Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

It was crazy, even edging to the side of the road to do photography or to check the GPS and that can be be impossible. I had a Garmin handheld GPS but navigation was impossible and dangerous.

Learning Human Reproduction In Vietnam

Create: 03/11/2017 - 16:17
VCS peddlars by the roadside -Saigon

I took a random tricycle bike tour of Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City at one time. At one street, I saw the strangest sight. I asked my cyclo (trishaw) driver who are all these people sitting by the roadside, all with a single, shiny VCD disc at their feet?

Selling "Human Reproduction Videos", he explained, perhaps embarrassed.

I told him we buy human reproduction videos at night markets back home. They have catalogs. Also we are more practical, we just call them blue or sum kap, I mumbled to myself, not sure if he can hear me through the traffic din.