Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Big Tour and Dad's Birthday!

So after a speech at a high school in Manhattan Beach with about 400 parents, we almost missed our plane on our way to Saskatoon, Canada!  It was absolutely a miracle that we made that plane which was the only one that would have gotten us there in time.  We did make it, but our bags didn't. Dad ran across from our hotel to the mall to get some shoes to give our speech in.  We had two really terrific groups there (see the blog at  Then it was off to the Big Tour beginning in Vietnam.  Wow have we had a great time here!  (Despite the fact that they again lost our bags and our hosts had us coming in two days later so nobody was there to pick us up.  Just added to the adventure!

There are 4 million motorcycles in Saigon!  The traffic is absolutely hilarious!  We spent two days in the Mekong Delta with a cute guide named Hung...Eli's age. He took us on several boats, several sizes, to a village where we had a fabulous lunch (elephant ear fish) and then rode bikes about five miles through villages, seeing the real thing!  Very third world.  Absolutely fascinating.  After another 2 1/2 hours in the car we found ourselves at a pretty crappy hotel but the most amazing experience at the floating markets.  Literally hundreds of boats loaded to the hilt with wholesale produce. They start to sell to retailers at about 4:30 a.m. every morning.  Then we walked through a market.  Pictures: 

Hallway of our first hotel.  Strange mattress? and fake flowers, but cute. Wish we'd taken pictures of that crazy hotel on the Mekong Delta.

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Out the car window!

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The floating market

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Here we are back in the city at the War Remnant Museum, the Reunification Palace and with the ever present motorcycles!

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The birthday boy!  Couldn't find one thing he wanted in this whole market!

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It's the same scene out any window! 

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A random wedding.  Cute couple!  

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             Our great friends at the YPO Vietnam Chapter

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Blowing out candles after a great birthday dinner at a fabulous Vietnamese Restaurant.  Fascinating place and such interesting people! 

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