Monday, August 31, 2009

Dam Sen Cultural Park

Out in District 11, the Dam Sen Cultural Park creates a sea of the green. There are a whole heap of attractions throughout the park but the highlight for most on a hot and humid day is the water park in the foreground.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Saturday, August 29, 2009

The abandoned Van Thanh market

On a prime piece of real estate on Dien Bien Phu st Van Thanh market sits unused. I love the 60s architecture and cannot wonder why it remains in a state of disrepair and dereliction. Anyone know? I would assume developers would be itching to get their hands on the site.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Shops and housing on Điện Biên Phủ st

The majority of housing with street frontage will have some sort of retail shop on the ground level and living space on the floors above. This is a pretty standard representation except all of these houses are quite old

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A bend in a river somewhere

These type of pictures portray rural Vietnam to be quite idyllic. I guess you would need to spend some time on the ground to make a proper judgment of just how tranquil the farming life would be.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Railway crossing

The Reunification Express, the Hanoi to HCMC line, has a number of street crossings on its way to Saigon station. It is not a bad way to see the countryside, however it is a pretty slow journey.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Huế citadel

The square ancient citadel of the central coast city of Huế is clearly visible from an airplane window. As is the internal forbidden city (square green area near river). The citadel is now registered as a UNESCO world heritage site and rehabilitation works have been underway to restore it back to its former glory.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Putzmeister

It is a little bit juvenile to laugh at this, but there used to be a guy at more previous employ who was called the Putzmeister - basically because he was a putz. I cannot believe there is a company producing concrete pumps with the same name

Friday, August 21, 2009

Beach, sand dunes and lagoon

A standard sight in central Vietnam are long straight stretches of beach with large lagoons behind them protected by sand dunes. The lagoons behind are a mix of fresh and salt water and are important habitats for local communities in fish and shrimp farming, as well as environmental conservation if managed properly. While the two great deltas are the source of most climate change discussion and funding, these areas in central Vietnam are also at high risk to rising sea levels, drought and natural disasters. As with most of Vietnam, I am looking forward to watching what happens in these areas in the future

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Fanta art

I really like the anime girl on this Fanta billboard. Classic Japanese style art. It does not make me want to drink Fanta though

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Marble statutes

A few different styles of buddha, lions, kings and queens, a trio that look like mary, joseph and jesus, turtles, frogs and a mermaid. There was also a statue of liberty but it is to the right.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Cows and the city

As is posted a few days ago, there is an area very close to downtown that is undergoing massive transformation from a rural to urban setting. There are many new housing estates under construction but as the snap shows, the old locals have not completely made way for the new brigade just yet.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Soil runoff

Most of the rivers I have seen in Vietnam have a high concentration of soil and are likely to be carrying nitrogen, phosphorous, agrochemicals and soil organic matter. This process will inevitably have some environmental impact, as can be seen in this photo of a river in northern Vietnam

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Vina CHiPs

Most of the traffic cops here ride these unnecessarily large bikes in what, to me at least, is more a matter of show than anything else. I cannot help thinking of the old TV show CHiPs whenever I see them, especailly as the guys in the beige-yellow outfit always seem to look a little like Ponch

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Rice paddies and bridges

The area in District 2 where the new ring roads are cutting through is relatively rural considering how close it is to the city centre. This rice paddy will surely be non existent in a few years thanks to the Phu My bridge and potential new CDB development.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Local toys

Translation of crab has always been difficult here. However who would want to miss out on the chance to make crap out of blocks?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Durian stall

It seems no other foodstuff quite polarises people like durian. Personally I do not mind the odour and quite like the creamy texture of the fruit. There is quite a sweet aroma when you drive past this stall and at about US$2 a kilo, it is a steal

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Evening ferry crossing

Most of the rivers around Saigon no longer require ferries to haul people across them. The second branch of the Mekong outside of Cần Thơ still requires a ferry crossing, although the bridge is not far off completion

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Petrol truck

This is one of those classical sights you can find all over Vietnam. A petrol truck with the large "no smoking" sign and the passenger hanging his arm out the window with a cigarette in it. Why the "no smoking" is written in English I do not know

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Monday, August 03, 2009

St Joseph's in Hanoi

During the day the church looks like it needs a paint job, at night it is much more spectacular

Saturday, August 01, 2009

August Theme Day - Night

It is a pretty standard sight around HCMC, but may be unusual to those outside of Vietnam. Motorcycle taxis, known as xe ôm, gather around night spots looking for fares. While waiting, it is common to see them stretch out and fall asleep on their bikes. You can get this type of picture 24 hours a day, and it reinforces the notion that Vietnamese are able to fall asleep just about anywhere at anytime

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