Tuesday, February 7

Mekong - Photo Essay Part 1

On our second day in Saigon, we decided to take a tour of the Mekong Delta. (Yes, we'd said we'd never take a tour again, but we just didn't have time to do the Mekong independently.) It started with a bus ride from Saigon to the Delta:

On the bus ride, our tour guide introduced himself and started giving us a little info about the area. He was a very friendly, knowledgeable guide and we instantly felt better about taking yet another tour. The Mekong showed us the up side of tours: if you have a good guide and a good group, you can learn a lot about the area while meeting other cool travelers. In fact, our guide was such a nice guy that we couldn't help but forgive him when he tried to lead the bus in a round of the "Coconut Song." What's that? You don't know how the Coconut Song goes? Well, first of all, cocount must be pronounced "conk-o-nut."

Conkonut! (high pitched)
Conkonut! (low pitched)
Conkonut! (high pitched)
Conkonut! (low pitched)

Repeat ad nauseum. Now you understand just how nice he was - we were able to forgive him even after that.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, the Mekong. It's an incredible area, and at risk of seeming lazy, pictures really are the best way to describe it. No one ever really reads the text anyway, right?

So, what follows are A LOT of pictures of the Mekong, with a few informative captions interspersed. In fact, so many pics that we'll do this in two installments. Here's the first. Enjoy.

A line-up of the Mekong tour boats. We were hoping we didn't end up on the boat third from the left. (And we thought Sea Change had a list!)

Side view of one of the tour boats.

Tom talking to our conkonutty tour guide.

Some houses along the Mekong.

As you might guess, boats are a very important part of life on the Mekong. All of the boats have very loud 2-stroke motors that sound exactly like the THWAP THWAP THWAP of a helicopter. Interesting background noise for our tour of the Mekong.

Two ferries passing under overcast skies - just like home!

There were a lot of people living on their boats, which they covered with tarps to keep the rain out. Again, just like home!

Many of the boats had giant eyes painted on the bow - apparently these are dragon eyes that are meant to scare off sea monsters.

Our first stop on the Mekong was a small town with a fruit market. Although we were just as sick of exploring markets as you are of seeing pics of them, it was neat to see all the Vietnamese flags flying in honor of a national holiday (unfortunately, I can't remember which holiday!).

Villagers loading up their boats to shuttle goods down the Mekong.

After the market we stopped on an island for lunch. It had been pouring all morning, but there was a miraculous break in the rain after lunch, so Tom and I wandered off down a path to do some exploring. The tour group was a good bunch of people, but it's still nice to exercise your independence every once in awhile!

Tom crossing a rickety bridge, wearing the ubiquitous and highly fashionable plastic bag rain jacket - totally waterproof! (Until you rip it after owning it for 2 minutes).

More Mekong pics coming soon...

- Jessi


At 6:51 PM, Blogger Nashib said...

Hey Guys,
Nice to see you that you are doing such an excellent job of the pictures and the blog, post trip. All those pictures of Vietnam brought back memories ...



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