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Cai Be and Sa Dec

January 24, 2017

Dorothy! We are definitely not in Kansas! We had an interesting day with a unique set of sights, sounds and smells. The ship is full and there are four tenders that take us on a variety of excursions. Appropriatel enough the MGs are the Green Group.we were the first to leave on our tour this morning. The ship drops anchor in the middle ofthe river at night and then we go by small boats to our destinations. 

As we drove to our first stop, we passed through the floating markets. The wholesale vendors hang whatever wares the are selling on the top of a bamboo pole. Shoppers then pull up their boats and purchase what they want.

Our first stop was to some local workshops. We saw locals making a variety of local snacks including coconut candy–they use every part of the coconut from the edible parts for candy, the shells for bowls and the byproduct for fuel. 

We also saw demonstrations on puffed rice, peanut products, rice paper used for spring rolls and snake wine–which two of our group tried.

We did get to sample everything with hot tea and there was time to purchase items too.

Many bought local crafts.

We then walked to a local Catholic church which was surrounded by large plumerias, bougainvillea, ixora and more blooming tropicals. Then it was back on the tenders to the ship for a talk on Vietnam history and lunch.

After lunch, we boarded back on the tenders for a ride to Sa Dec. this was obviously a larger town and more affluent. Our first stop was a temple of Caodaism one of the top 3 religions in Vietnam. The temple was a sea of color, art and lights. They combine all religions in to one worshipping many things. It was quite interesting.

Then it was back on the tenders to the local market which was packed with people, scooters, and vendors selling everything from fruits and vegetables to household goods,rice and spices to raw meat–including rat! It is the one in the foreground.

Live, dead and dried fish and seafood, plus fresh eggs were available, some so fresh they were hatching! 

It was a bit overwhelming made more interesting with the thousands of honking scooters.

Midstream, we went to see the Lovers Home, asmall museum in the center of the market. 

Then it was back to our ship for the evening activities and dinner.

It was a full and interesting day. I did get a full nights sleep so we are off to a good start. Today we go by trishaw– a type of rickshaw to part of our tour. It is a beautiful day!

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