Browsing All posts tagged under »Ho Chi Minh City«

How Santa Lost His Head In Ho Chi Minh City

December 30, 2010


The three nước ngoài (foreigners) in the office were focussed on meeting the 8pm deadline for putting the paper to bed on Christmas Eve. Our Vietnamese co-workers were, as was usually the case, a lot more relaxed about the time. The office was tinseled up, the mood was festive and bright but my Canadian colleague […]

Photo Friday – A Ho Ho Ho Chi Minh Christmas

December 23, 2010


I had two bittersweet Christmases in Ho Chi Minh City. Bitter because I was so far from my family, sweet because I was in an amazing and exotic city with many new adventurous friends (and Darling Man for the second one.) Downtown Saigon was filled with flashing lights (sponsored by Heinekin one year), balloon sellers, […]

Christmas Culture Clash

December 17, 2010


Darling Man is Buddhist and a minimalist. Trying to make him understand the mish-mash of Christmas traditions is difficult. So when I announced I was buying the baby three Christmas presents, a discussion began that appeared to be a highway to an argument. “Buy them in Vietnam,” he said, dismissively. “It’s cheaper.” “But we’re going […]

Motorbike 101 – Just Go

November 19, 2010


“This is the brake,” Chi said, squeezing the brake levers to demonstrate. “Yep, the same as a bicycle,” I said. “On this bike you have to hold the brake to start the ignition,” Chi continued. Suddenly things seemed much more complicated than I expected, especially as I’d asked for an automatic motorbike so I didn’t […]

Corruption Capers

November 14, 2010


A customs officer motions to our two carry-on bags, sitting on the collection area of the scanning machine.  “Iphone?” he says. Darling Man tilts his head slightly to convey a yes. The customs officer pulls his stern gaze away from Darling Man and goes back to his station. A strange atmosphere descends on the scanning […]

Wonderfully Wild Weedy Wraps

November 11, 2010


Herbs are not for dainty garnishes in Vietnam. They are used in abundance, great fistfuls of them. Mounds of weedy-looking leaves are served alongside soup, the leaves to be stripped and thrown into the hot broth to wilt. Darling Man and I found a place that serves virtual mountains of scraggy leaves, arranged in an […]

Testicle Face

November 9, 2010


“What do you call those things on that guy’s face? Testicles?” Darling Man asks with a puzzled frown. “WHAT???” “You know, in that movie we saw last week,” Darling Man says, stroking his chin like he had a Ho Chi Minh beard. “That guy had testicles on his face.” “WHAT???” I say again. “I have […]