Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Quan Hy, again

I'm back here again, this time with Lindy. Managed to avoid most of the dishes that I tried four months ago, save for the must-not-misses.

Seafood noodle, Hue styled

Chicken with rice cake

Cha Gio, Hue styled

Steamed rice cake with fish and condiments

Mango salad, Hue styled

Pho 24

This little eatery is a well known establishment all over Vietnam. It was even featured on HK food escapades.

Pho Ga (chicken noodle)

Pho Bo (Beef noodle)

Beef balls (no idea what's it called in Vietnamese)

Cha Gio (rolled crabmeat in rice paper, fried)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Teik Lee!

Omigosh, thank you Facebook. For a moment there I almost missed a friend's birthday wish. That's what happens when I travel without my notebook.

Happy Birthday Teik Lee!


Vung Tau is a place worth a night's stay, no more. I made the mistake of travelling without both our passports, which got us stuck for awhile trying to negotiate the hotel room registration. In the end, I did the unthinkable. I plucked numbers from the air, told the reception this is the passport numbers, fictitious dates of expiry and gave her my Malaysian driving license as proof. Hahaaa.... and she said she needs to register visitors' details at the police station. Uh oh....

The other mistake was having lugged both our helmets from Saigon, only to find that people here are reluctant to rent out bikes without passport as collateral. Stupid mistake. We ended up with a lot of walking, and taxi rides. Dumb dumb dumb.

Oh well, no intention of repeating the trip, so no point griping too much.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Holidaying @ Vung Tau

We got into Vung Tau by Hydrofoil. It's an hour and 20 minutes ride from Saigon, costing VND140,000 per person. The trip comes complimentary with a bottle of drinking water, and wet tissue (??)

I think this is a good way of travel, instead of the 2 hours drive by car. Way too slow and tiring.

The view, and the wind at this seaside town, makes the journey worthwhile.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

My darling's arrived

Yea yea...

She arrived on the 6.38pm flight, looking lost as she walked out of the airport. It could be so for most, stepping out into a foreign place the first time. Good thing I'm right there waiting for her.

So what's her first impression of the Country? I doubt she has much to say, since she's paying more attention to me than the views outside (heeheeehee..)

Tomorrow morning's a full day of exploring the city for her....

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Tagboard removed

I had to remove the Message Board from my blog.
It is a fact now, asking politely will not get any positive results.

So like in any situation when dealing with idiots - if they cannot act responsibly, take away the privilege.

Friends will have to comment on the posts.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Shooting the messenger

Ever been in a position where you had a job to do, and in the process of getting it done, you got shot for it?

It's really stupid, isn't it? C'mon, we're a go-between for two sides that cannot work directly. So what happens if one side tells only half the truth, and the other expects the whole truth?

We give them half of what's told to us, or make up the balance and get the happy message across?

Seems which ever way I choose to do it, the result's still the same.

Bloody politics.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

I take an excerpt from The Star, 20th April on Seek discounts with OCPDs on summonses, public told.

"Abdullah Rahim, 63, from Petaling Jaya, waited for almost three hours and was only halfway in the queue.

“This is like double punishment for us. We have already committed the traffic offence and we are willing to pay for that. Now that we want to pay, we have to wait for so long,” he said, adding that he had to wait at a stuffy parking lot basement with poor ventilation.

Sales executive Ong Bee Chin, 38, said that while the move to encourage the public to pay up summonses was lauded, the wait was too much for her to bear."

Shame on you.

Committing the offense is your choice. Paying for the offence is your punishment. Just because you can afford to pay for it, doesn't mean you can go on committing the offense.

Don't like the queue, Don't commit wrong.

In fact, you had it easy to get to pay within stone's throw from your home. They ought to take your vehicle away, and punish you with the inconvenience of not having your vehicle.

Lazy, spoit buggers.

Friday, April 18, 2008

I'm back to Saigon

Finally back in Saigon. So the big question now is, what is the difference between Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi.

I'm going to list the Pros and Cons by Blue and Red for both cities. Mind you, this is a personal opinion, from my observation. Feel free to comment on it.


  • Better traffic system - probably due to the organised town planning of a square lattice of road system
  • Cleaner air - less construction, less haze
  • Healthier living - less congestion, large parks
  • Business like - the living purpose is to earn an income
  • Deadly - buses on the road runs like it's trying to run you down


  • Nicer views - lakes and french architecture
  • Convenient shopping - same wares are sold in the same street
  • Mythical and romantic - full of history, culture, statues
  • Deafening - drivers honk until you give way, and road hogs don't give way
  • Weather - it is definitely cooler up north

As for the food, I cannot veer in either direction. I love to eat, and love everything that I ate. Be it in a restaurant, a hidden shop in an alley, or backpacked canned food and bread.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Dinner @ Garden, 36 Hang Manh St

Mr Son bought me dinner at Garden, Hanoi. This is a Vietnamese food restaurant, with really nice food.

Thai style salad

Crab soup

This is an interesting dish. Fried sweet corn. I believe it's dipped in a flour mixture to lock in the juice.

Rice paper spring roll. The secret to this dish is the herbs used. I've not figured out the name of it yet.

Bo luc lac. A similar style of cooking as the Nam Son beefsteak.

Shrimp and pineapple soup. The taste comes from the little green stalks. Again I've no idea what it is called.

Hot pot fish and fatty pork. A salty dish.

French architecture

Hanoi's Opera House

Bun cha nem cua be @ 67 Duong Thanh, Hanoi

My lunch today, introduced by Ms Huong and Ms Lien.

Grilled pork, in fish sauce soup

Fried spring roll

Visiting Uncle Ho

I was invited to pay a visit to the revered First President of Vietnam, Mr Ho Chi Minh, affectionately referred to as Uncle Ho.

The mausoleum where his body had been preserved for the past 30* years. No photography allowed, no talking, no handphones in there. The place is built up complete of granite surfaces, and kept really cool. Inside, four guard of honour stands on shift round the clock.

During the visit, an elderly lady (from a southern province) stopped in front of me, and bowed in respect. Her gesture indicated how important this man had been to the people of Vietnam.

The Presidential Palace

President Ho Chi Minh's humble abode from 1954 to 1958

His official mode of transport

President Ho Chi Minh's humble abode from 1958 to 1969

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Pho Bo @ 6 Hang Non St, Hanoi

Look for this signboard, and enter the little dark corridor behind the guy.

The lady owner cum cook. Her little dining hall doubles as the living room of the family. I was sitting at the other end of the room. She only had to reach out with the bowl, and I'll reach out and receive my meal from where I was seated.

This is Pho Bo, Hanoi style. It's rather nice, and definitely filling. The amount of Ajinomoto thrown in was quite scary. But I suppose that's where the great taste come from. I hope I won't start shedding hair from this.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Silk cloth factory

Artisan repairing the broken silk threads.

Me standing beside the machine that makes the silk cloth - technology had advanced to the point that the machines run itself....

... using hole-in-board instruction cards to produce the patterns.

Silk making process

Silk cloth production process. One thing for certain, it is a very noisy process.

A sumptuous lunch

This is one of the healthiest chicken I've ever eaten. Not the least bit of fat on it.

Fried glass noodle (made of green bean!). Really tasty stuff.

Young bamboo shoots. The bony thing in the bowl is a goose head.