Ho Chi Minh

To get from Chiang Mai to Bali, the cheapest flight is via Hi Chi Minh. And since we had to land there already, we decided to spend 10 days in this Southern Vietnam metropolis. Ignorant of the fact we did not need visa, we waited for an hour and a half to be told about this. Welcome to communist public service hell.

In the coming days, we discovered a contrastive city, where Maybach limousines park next to people wearing but plastic bags to protect their soles from the hot street. Where a bus ride costs 25 cents and controllers randomly check the tickets, probably more to check if the vendors had issued a ticket rather than if someone had managed to sneak by the vendor. Where the state should take care of everything, but as a tourist guide put it: you guys pay taxes and get schools for it. We pay taxes and don’t get anything for it. And where you can get an idea of how long it can take a country to recover from 50 years of war during in the end of which the US lost a war with a balance of almost 60k young American soldiers dead, many more physically and psychologically crippled veterans, millions of gallons of poisonous chemicals and thousands of landmines and unexploded bombs left in the fields, executed and deadborn babies and thousands of poisoned and crippled children.

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