C40's Journal

Where are you and where are you going?
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C40
Posts: 2546
Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:30 am

Re: C40's Journal

Post by C40 »

2Birds1Stone wrote:
Thu Aug 06, 2020 4:02 am
Thank you for taking us to Hanoi, your photography never disappoints.

I'm actually surprised by the price of coffee, mistakenly thought it would have been cheaper.

We found really good espresso (singles) in Portugal for ~.60-1.20 Euro, Poland is more expensive for some reason, and not as good.
If you buy "Vietnamese style coffee" here, it's cheaper. It is all made with really cheap robusta beans, made in a certain way - sort of like a pourover I think, but perhaps with really finely ground coffee or a lot of it. It results in really strong/concentrated, bitter, coffee that tastes horrible - like charcoal and cigarette smoke. You can buy that for about $0.50 in most places.

RealPerson
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Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:33 pm

Re: C40's Journal

Post by RealPerson »

About the HCM mausoleum. There were huge lines with visitors and schoolkids when I was there. The embalmed body has to be sent to Moscow for maintenance every so often. At those times the mausoleum is closed.

It is quite interesting. The body looks like it is carved out of soap. Extremely pale. There is a lot of security and you cannot really stop to observe better. We were told HCM did not want to be embalmed like Lenin, but supposedly the communists ignored his wishes and embalmed him anyway. Maybe it is not HCM but the body definitely looks like him.

IIRC the really nice lake in central Hanoi is the place where John McCain's plane went down during the war. The public bathroom on the little island in the lake sold toilet paper by the single ply sheet before going in. I have a photo of the setup that was very funny, but it wouldn't be so funny if you had GI upset. That public restroom may not be there anymore. Your photos are bringing back a lot of great memories. Please keep them coming!

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RFS
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Re: C40's Journal

Post by RFS »

Hey C40, thanks so much for your journal! I bet it takes a lot of time to write clearly, upload the pictures, make the charts, etc. I really appreciate it!

I've been thinking of visiting SEA, and your journal has bolstered the notion that it would be awesome indeed. I've got one question, though: what do you do about water out there? Are there any drinkable municipal sources? Are you drinking bottled water all day? If you've already covered this, my apologies (I ctrl f'd the last 3 pages and couldn't find any info.)

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C40
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Re: C40's Journal

Post by C40 »

RealPerson wrote:
Thu Aug 06, 2020 11:15 pm
About the HCM mausoleum....... There were huge lines with visitors and schoolkids when I was there. The embalmed body has to be sent to Moscow for maintenance every so often. At those times the mausoleum is closed.

IIRC the really nice lake in central Hanoi is the place where John McCain's plane went down during the war. ...
McCain landed in Trúc Bạch Lake. The lake I was talking about is Ho Hoan Kiem. Truc Bach is about 2 kilometers northwest of Hoan Kiem.

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C40
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Re: C40's Journal

Post by C40 »

RFS wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 12:43 pm
Hey C40, thanks so much for your journal! I bet it takes a lot of time to write clearly, upload the pictures, make the charts, etc. I really appreciate it!

I've been thinking of visiting SEA, and your journal has bolstered the notion that it would be awesome indeed. I've got one question, though: what do you do about water out there? Are there any drinkable municipal sources? Are you drinking bottled water all day? If you've already covered this, my apologies (I ctrl f'd the last 3 pages and couldn't find any info.)
Bottled water, all day every day. In coffee shops and such, they have RO systems hooked up to the municipal water. For a long time I was drinking from 6 liter bottles. I felt bad about throwing so many bottles away. I drop them off at a scrap sorting place near my house, but even if they are recycled, it's still not god.

Recently I started getting 20 liter bottles delivered. There are water delivery companies that bring 20 liter bottles to your house for very cheap. Hopefully that water is filtered with a good RO system. It tastes like it is. It is really cheap, about $1 per bottle after you've paid a similar deposit.

McTrex
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Location: NL

Re: C40's Journal

Post by McTrex »

Beautiful pics C40, thanks!

CS
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Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2012 10:24 pm

Re: C40's Journal

Post by CS »

Can you get a RO system for your place? I've got one for about $130 that hooks up to the sink and is portable. Used to travel with it.

Might be worth it if hanging around for more than a few months.

1taskaday
Posts: 461
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: C40's Journal

Post by 1taskaday »

Loving the journal.

No travel for me at the moment... beginning to pinch a little now with the thought of winter coming soon.

Solvent
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Re: C40's Journal

Post by Solvent »

Gilberto de Piento wrote:
Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:20 am
I remember talking to someone that thought the vietnam war was caused because the US wanted vietnam's natural resources. I just let it pass but I regret not asking if that was taught in schools and whether they thought it also had to do with communism vs. capitalism.
This is definitely my experience - i.e., most Vietnamese are taught that the American war was a result of imperial powers trying to control Vietnam's resources. And as far as I know, if you were to look specifically at the French and then Japanese imperial conquests, it is to a reasonable extent true. But it's not as true if you consider specifically the American war.
ertyu wrote:
Tue Jul 14, 2020 12:58 am
Last but not least, it's not in the experience of many people from that part of Asia that their government is something they can change, impact, or do anything meaningful about. Trying, for an ordinary person, would mean courting trouble more than effecting change. People keep themselves safe and avoid the frustration of trying to rage against an immovable force.
For what it's worth, this also rings true in my experience of that part of the world. There's a certain kind of person that gets involved in politics, and it's a one-party system, so they get involved from within the system and work that way. But for your average person, they tend to accept it as it is and ignore it to the extent possible. It feels like politics is not the sort of everyday concern that it's made to be in Western countries, with the media always pushing political debates to the fore.

I love the ubiquitous coffee shops all over Vietnam. They're a great place to chill out and people watch. I actually also like Vietnamese coffee, but it's definitely not the same as the arabica varieties more appreciated in other countries.

The observations about your girlfriend and the spider are interesting. After my parents-in-law (southern Vietnam) had their new house built, birds were nesting in the eaves and fouling their rainwater, which was collected off the roof. They didn't want to do anything about it, because they considered that the birds nesting there was a sign that the building was a good place. I guess you couldn't perfectly translate the concept. The building was 'blessed' in a sense by the presence of the birds.

zarathustra
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Location: VEGAS, BABY

Re: C40's Journal

Post by zarathustra »

Solvent wrote:
Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:23 pm
I love the ubiquitous coffee shops all over Vietnam. They're a great place to chill out and people watch. I actually also like Vietnamese coffee, but it's definitely not the same as the arabica varieties more appreciated in other countries.
I also remember enjoying the coffee in Vietnam quite a bit, but I also love bitter. I'm a bitter woman, heh.

Glad to see you thriving in Vietnam, C40!! I would love to go back. It is one of the most surprisingly beautiful places I've been.

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