Thursday, June 25, 2009

Day 4

We went on a 2 day tour of Mekong data. We were picked up at 8 am and went by bus to My Tho. The bus could hold about 30 people. Our group consisted of Vietnamese people and foreigners. I and my son were not the first passengers so we had to sit at the back. We took some nautamines in case we felt carsick. Luckily, the back seats were higher than the front seats. We could see the outside easily. We got to the habour around noon.

It was sunny and very hot but we had to wear life jackets to travel on the boat. My son looked strange and really hot in this jacket. He sweated a lot but never complained. He was so eager with the boat ride. It was cool and windy on the water. The river was wide, full of water. (At first I was a bit afraid. If ... I could not swim). From the river I could see My Thuan Bridge in the far distance. The bridge was constructed with the assistance of Australia.

The first destination was the place in Ben Tre where they made coconut candy. Ben Tre was famous for coconut trees. Women here were compared to this kind of trees in a very famous song. We travelled along the canal, under the shadow of the water coconut trees. Peaceful. Quiet. Houses on the two banks of the canal were simple. So many trees. Travelling here reminded me of classic films about Vietnam war I saw on TV long time ago. The tour guide showed us how they made coconut candy. I bought some packages for my family and friends.

We continued to the Turtoise island and had lunch in the middle of the large orchard. So cool. My son climbed some trees. He was active. He did not let his body relax. We bought a kilo of longans. They were sweet but too juicy. On the ride back to the habour we visited another orchard.
We went there by a small boat rowed by two local people.The boat could hold 6 people: 2 rowers and 4 tourists. We wore traditional Vietnamese hats because the boat has no roof. The creek was narrow. Travelling along it we could smell the water and the wet ground. We enjoyed some kinds of fruits and listened to folk songs. Then we walked through the orchard to a place drinking honey tea. When we were about to leave, a local man showed tourists a small python. He put it on his shoulder. I did not dare to look at it. Scary.

We went back to the harbour and continued the bus trip to Can Tho. We had to cross the river by ferry. It took a lot of time to cross it. Walking to the ferry station in the sun, waiting there, crossing the river, walking in the sun to the bus. By the way, the roads leading to the stations and the stations were terribly dirty, smelling and hot. I and my son stayed in a three star hotel near the river.

The hotel was new and modern. The room was very large and well-equipped: an LCD TV, a big bath, a shower, a sofa,... My son chose to have a bath. He opened the tap and played in the bath. He liked this hotel more than the hotel in Saigon. Moreover, the hotel has got a roof top restaurant. We had dinner there. So wonderful. My son even said we would stay there again next time.