Presidential Palace And A New Favorite Hang-OutPosted: August 17, 2012
Yesterday Debbi and I went to Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. It belongs to a large historical site consisting of other buildings, where Ho Chi Minh lived and worked at for about 15 years. Being Vietnamese, I only think of it as somewhere you’d go to once in your life for a school trip and be done with, but for Debbi, it’s like a dystopia. And I could kind of see that. You are herded along this special walkway to get to the mausoleum; you have to check your bags, then check it again for electronic devices; the buildings are a mix between French colonial, traditional Vietnamese, and 1970′s Russian, and on top of it all there is a giant TV screen playing patriotic songs on a loop. No wonder she thought it was all a bit like stepping into Metropolis.
I didn’t get a lot of pictures because it was too horribly hot. After we left the mausoleum, we went to this used bookstore that I knew Debbi would love but we haven’t got a chance to check out because it’s a bit of a hassle to get to. I’m telling you – we’ve found our new favorite hang-out. This is a place we can spend a lot of time in without feeling bad about it like the mall. It’s a tiny bookstore full of used (and some new) English books, and there’s a cafe across the courtyard that has all the comfort food from around the world. Best bookstore ever!
A word of warning the bookstore though: the second floor is decorated by these mildly terrifying papier-mâché masks.