[kl-bogel] Saigon: hospital, tunnels, and pioneers (21 photos)

I am in Hanoi, and just now in our Central Backpackers hostel pouring free beer! Effective this ball from 7 to 8 hours, and bed costs five dollars. My German friend Jens had to drink six glasses for 40 minutes. I feel like a stranger in this celebration of life, because I do not drink alcohol. Tea is free does not give - here it is, the promotion of alcohol abuse and molestation of international youth.
Instead of hysteria, I have been a traditional pastime pensioner: I am writing my memoirs.

(17-19 April)

I arrived in Saigon in the morning. The border between Cambodia and Vietnam were quite calm. After leaving the bus, sent her a host of smsku www.couchsurfing.org , but he did not come out on the link. I decided to pull the time in the city, in the hope that he soon showed up.
Life-asserting singing the song "I'm a tramp and a thief, and your father prosecutor, poslonyalsya on tourist ghetto Pham Ngu Lao, withdrew from an ATM Cash and watched the passers-by.
In Southeast Asia many beginners bekpekery buy badges with flags of countries visited and sew on your backpack. As children, to God. As if Thailand or Laos can be proud of. This is not Afghanistan or the Congo.

Went to the War Remnants Museum, dedicated to the war in Viet Nam and the U.S.. Very interesting museum, especially the exhibition of works by photojournalists. I saw absolutely brilliant work of photojournalist Larry Burrows. They can be viewed at these links: 1 and 2.

Everything just took off war, but he did art.

In Vietnam, portrayed the war with the United States and South Vietnam are very one-sided. Bloody murderers against iznemozhdennyh but proud liberators. But the war - it's not comics. On each side of the war and heroes, and executioners. There is no black and white, only various shades of gray. Especially in the Civil War, and Vietnam was just such a war. Not all citizens were against America and for the communist ideals.
One of the most powerful books on the Civil War - "Quiet Flows the Don by Mikhail Sholokhov. No wonder he got the Nobel Prize for it. Brother against brother, oppressive fear of uncertainty, despair, let's just life, without embellishment. This is a great book, whoever wrote it did not - he Sholokhov or unnamed white officer who allegedly stole manuscript Sholokhov. But I think it's still Sholokhov, because he had read his "Virgin Soil Upturned, who could not write a White Guard officer. It is much weaker than the "Quiet Flows the Don", but it seems to me that these books were written by one and the same person.

In the Reunification Palace, the main building in Saigon. This is a bust of Ho Chi Minh City, local Grandpa Lenin. They even something similar. Ho Chi Minh City is shown in all denominations.
Just as in the case with Lenin, in honor of Ho Chi Minh City, was renamed the second largest city in the country. Bourgeois-nationalist Saigon became Ho Chi Minh City a model city.

Red banner
Vietnam immediately apparent red flags with yellow stars, hammers and sickles. They're everywhere. Agitplakat, slogans, banners, all this pretentious and deceitful communist rhetoric about peace, solidarity and cooperation. A true goals - like all: power, money and influence. Fake communist postulates stuffed nauseam since childhood, and no matter what the theory of everything was beautiful. Too many people have ruined romance in leather jackets.

I photographed the billboards of the Communist Party of Viet Nam across the country. A little later I will make a separate post about this extravaganza of fine art.
And in Vietnam block Facebook. That's what can bring the country of communists. Many bekpekery in a panic, as the meaning of life is temporarily lost.

Vietnam is developing on the Chinese model - lack of freedom of speech and choice, full of political monopoly, but private ownership is allowed. Market economy, businesses are actively growing and is supported by the state. The country is developing rapidly, the economic indicators are rising. They are all pretty good.

On the street I was presented with advertising Indian restaurant. For me, this very phrase sounds preposterous. I'll eat this food only in the case of a third world war and then when you run all the dogs and rats.
Time passed, the response from Eddie and was not. I decided to call him. Asked the woman on Motobike give me the phone for a minute. Contact with Eddie, the same woman I was and took him home. For money, of course, this is Vietnam and not Syria. Tried to knock down more than agreed, but I'm on such things already do not pay attention, just how much crying dogvarivalis.
Arrived in his temporary home.

My host Eddie and Vietnamese girlfriend Irishman Steve. It has shorts, frankly, only very small.

Eddie from Slovakia and a half working in Saigon, a teacher of English. He with other expats removes a house in twenty minutes by Motobike from center (District 3). This is a very narrow six-story house. On the ground floor kitchen and hallway with motorcycles, the second - a living room, more room on each floor. To me, Eddie bed mattress in the corner for a washing machine in front of his room. So three nights I slept almost the landing.
In addition to Eddie, live in the house are two Irish, one of them with a Vietnamese girlfriend. And another artist Susie on the top floor.
I've always liked the artist, and I liked it. Emotional, amorous, sincere, desperate. Ideal heroine inflamed shorts. Totally unsuitable for a quiet family happiness. Like me, though.
So, something I digress. Have forgotten how to smell like a girl, but if I see someone in a dress (about once every two weeks), just standing there stunned looking at the miracle of a cold the past.
Eddie pays for his apartment $ 200 per month, plus $ 25 for utilities. Earns somewhere in 1200 dollars. They've got a school and a Pole working lied leadership that he is half an Englishman.
Eddie lived another kauchserfer Wojciech from Poland. Since the Poles I then immediately find a common language, we are with them are very similar.
Eddie said that he would never accept Americans, as he considers them rude and uncivilized. Most of all he loves visitors from Eastern Europe, since then it feels like home. It is an interesting man with a million different stories.

What did you say?
On the second day in Saigon, I simultaneously broke down notebook, mobile phone and the right ear. It began to ache severely after Sihanoukville, then I began to hear worse and worse, there was a dark ring and state the total dope. I first went to the drugstore and there I was given drops and antibiotics. It was not the best idea. I have been taking these medications one day, and I felt worse. When the evening sitting with the guys and talked in the living room, I had to turn to the sound source healthy ear.
Eddie said that hospitals here are very cheap, and it can take me there in the morning.

In the morning he took me to a public hospital. I paid for the reception at the doctor Laura-five dollars. She is well spoken in English, delivered the diagnosis: inflammation of the middle ear infection in the right ear canal. Has written me a prescription of 6 drugs, I bought them down to the drugstore for $ 12. Antibiotics, drops, pain medication, and three unidentified drug. The course lasts for 6 days.
After the first dose I felt much better. Do not self, it's just a waste of time.
Eddie said that he sometimes goes to the hospital here, where just to see a doctor, you have to pay $ 50. With your insurance, I decided not to get involved because of the $ 17. I doubt very much that they have something to compensate, just spend as much on negotiations with the center.

Traffic in Saigon

I like Saigon. Civilized and developed city, the business capital of the country. Public transport is not as a class, all ride motoybaykah. If there is no motorbike, you take Motobike taxi ($ 1.5-2 USD).
In Saigon, registered 6,000,000 motorbike and only 300 thousand units of the rest of transport. And there are still unaccounted number of motorcycles registered in other regions.

Vietnamese bought the rights for 100,000 dong ($ 5), the rules no one ever taught them so here and there. I rode a Motobike in Phnom Penh and was horrified by the traffic. Compared with Saigon, Phnom Penh - a city-desert. No pictures, no video, not even George Washington can not describe the number of motorcycles in the city and the intensity of their movements. Average flow velocity of 30 km / hour. The advantage is more bulky vehicle. There are only two directions, from which can not appear other Motobike - he can not fall from the sky and move out of the ground. From all other directions is always waiting for the attack. Riding on the counter - the norm. Spread - at any time upon request, no one not holding back themselves. Pedestrians are not inferior to no one, to cross the street without the skill and courage is very difficult. If you are a foreigner in the car, and became a party to an accident - your fault anyway, and pay all.
Eddie's travels around the city for two decades of Honda, 50 pp. He bought it for two hundred dollars. All his friends ride on rented motorbike, and their passports are constantly on the pledge. Rent is $ 4-5 per day.

Many travelers passing by on motorcycles, Vietnam from north to south or vice versa. Motorcycles can be bought and sold in Saigon to Hanoi. Or vice versa. Do you have a right or not - it does not matter, because any foreign rights in Vietnam are invalid. Legally, all the foreigners go illegally. True, you can take on Vietnamese law, but there are a number of conditions, one of which - the three-month visa.
Used motorcycle in Saigon or Hanoi is 275-350 dollars. The cheapest option - a "Minsk". They are powerful, well-suited for mountain roads, spare parts are available and they can be repaired in any village. This is a consequence of close friendship with the Soviet Union.
In all the hostels and guesthouses hang for sale motorcycles. In bekpekerskih areas in both capitals can be seen motorcycles with a sign For Sale.
This is very exciting but perilous journey from Vietnam to the crazy traffic and your complete lack of rights in the event of any accident. In Vietnam, a relatively high level of road deaths. I have seen here a lot of accidents.

Co Chi Tunnels
One day I went on an excursion to Ko Chi tunnels (Co Chi Tunnels). $ 5 plus $ 4 for admission. In Vietnam, everything is so organized that go with a tour cheaper than most. The tunnels are 60 km from the center of Saigon, but to get there by public transport is practically impossible, and Motobike for $ 5 round trip out of luck.
Viet Cong guerrillas have built an extensive network of tunnels, almost throughout the country to fight the enemy. There they lived, and from there attacked the Americans. The tunnels are designed for the Vietnamese, size XS. In these incredibly closely, however, is open for tourists only 100 meters of the tunnel. From our group of 25 people, only five dolezli until the end, the rest piled through emergency exits.
Interesting object, worth a visit.

After I went to Saigon in the Mekong Delta. Also an excursion, as it seemed to simpler and cheaper. $ 21 for two days.
Polyak, a friend of Eddie, told me:
- You want to go to the Mekong Delta, man? Simply remove the whore, they are all there in Saigon. It will take you to the village, will introduce their parents. Tell them: Mom, this Mister wants to marry me!
- I'm afraid, because I just do not get out. And generally I'm not paying for sex and the Internet.
Photos from the Mekong Delta will be later, if there is something decent. I have them have not even looked.

Local pioneer. All students in ties, but do you think?

This is a sore point. Before the trip I read a lot about the horrors of this country. Travellers one and all claim to live in Vietnam greedy, unfriendly, deceitful and rude people. After three weeks in Vietnam, I can say that these people here very much. But there are good people. Interviewed travelers appreciate the relation of good and bad people in Vietnam as a 15 to 85% of the most pessimistic estimates. And 50 to 50 on the most optimistic.
First Vietnamese I was very put out. I understand the motivation of American soldiers when they were shot from a helicopter entire villages. This is not such a crime as it may seem to those who have not been in Vietnam. But then I got used to it and just have not waited for no smiles, no decency or courtesy. It is not too difficult if you remember what country we were born. Here, just as we do in Vietnam because of socialism. But this doctrine does not have the happiness and smiles.
But if you suddenly to somewhere treated like human beings, it is surprising, warms the soul and uplifting.
Yes, the Vietnamese are not the most hospitable nation on earth. But all is not so bad. Just need to be stronger and have some armor from external stimuli. We are travelers, not whiny ingenue. James Cook nobody offers hotel and marijuana. A Amundsen on the road in general found only seals.
Servile population - not an obligatory attribute of an interesting country. It is definitely not a reason not to come to Vietnam. The country is very beautiful, there's something to see.
I've visited: Saigon, Mekong Delta, Dalat, Nha Trang, Hoi An, Hue, Hanoi, Halong Bay. Tomorrow going to Sapa, and then to Laos.

I already wrote a scathing signature, but wiped it off. Just rejoice that people love each other.

Ships on the waterfront. During the sunset here come the pair at the motorbike, hugs and thoughtful look at the dirty water. That we have with you, she asks, and he was unintelligible grunts.

During a trip to Ko Chi tunnels, we have delivered to the shop where they work alleged victims of war.

At Photosan this work would be called "Eternity ...", "Enlightenment is ... 'or' Reincarnation of ...".

This photo I shot with the risk of his life, as crazy bikers could break at any second. And these people do not feel pity!
The number of motorcyclists in the city can not display the artistic means. Note the umbrellas of Beeline in the left corner. This brand is represented in Cambodia. I was shocked when I saw. On umbrellas written quite a clumsy slogan - Live on the bright side! Indeed, why not.

While the men chopped a domino ...

... Women wash up bones neighbors.

Food Take away.

The woman took the child from school and immediately to the market.

Internet cafe. Before discharge in my own govnomet - think the conditions in which I work.

Vietnamese smiles - for such a rare card is quite possible to get some sort of prize.

Lone pioneer, known as Chipmunk.

Street food in our area. The main dish of the country - Pho soup with noodles, beef and onion. It is worth a dollar, enough to eat. Then I still liked the soup, now strongly pougas enthusiasm. Vietnamese are willing to eat in the catering, I think it's even cheaper than cooking yourself.
I had almost forgotten how to use a fork and saying in Russian is slower than in English. I forget some words and even build some questionable design. But it's when I say in Russian, but it happens rarely.

I came up with a new project "I've lived in this city." Emigrants and expats tell 10 facts and observations about his life abroad. Soon to be the first series of Barcelona.


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