Saturday, March 10
Jeff Hackman & Joanna Litchfield – Presiding Fellows
Today the group boarded the bus to stop and see the Ho Chi Minh mausoleum, which to us would be like the Washington Mall. Crowds were thick with people waiting in line to see the memorial of their past communist leader of Vietnam.
We then went to visit Song Phuong, a farmers market. The front of the market sold fresh meat of all kinds and different vegetables and fruits. As the group traveled towards the back of the market it opened up to hundreds of gardens. Walking down the narrow dirt paths, the sun felt warm and made all the colors of the various plants come alive. There was a calmness in the air as we walked, the water in the aqua ducts trickling along the path with tadpoles darting back and forth. The families tending their gardens were very warm to us, smiling and waving as we walked by. The gardens included tomatoes, cabbage, corn, kohlrabi, broccoli, guava, onion, banana trees, and various other crops.
The class then traveled to a lacquer painting studio. The artist will use egg shells, sand, and oyster shells to create a picture. The time it takes to make a lacquer painting ranges from 2 to 4 months depending on the size.
The class then traveled to the airport to catch Vietnam Airlines flight 253.
Welcome to Saigon! The plane touched down down at 6:00p.m. local time with a local temperature of 93 degrees.