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Monday, 9 June 2008

Saigon of old.

This video gives a look back to Saigon and brings back too many memories. I remember often sitting drinking a beer on the terrace of the Hôtel Continental seeing student rioters attacking the Legislature, The old opera house. Interesting entertainment unless the wind blew the tear gas the wrong way. Or the riots of the wounded and limbless Vietnamese veterans.

Or when I first arrived in 1965 visiting the bars of Tu Do street. I became a regular at a place called Tahiti bar. Later of course after spending years up country during the war when I moved back to Saigon I would only visit the old French cafés. After a year or two in Vietnam one looked for something with more depth of meaning.

The USO with its frigid air conditioning. Ice cold beer and good food. The Rex Hotel with its officer's club. The Continental terrace with its transvestites.
The black market on the sidewalks. The cinema where what I thoght was a Frenchwoman next to me playing footsies with me was a rat eating her dropped peanuts.

A city so full of memories. The good and the bad. But never a dull moment. Never boredom.

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