Friday, August 22, 2014

Hanoi another day.

We had to be up breakfasted and ready to go by 8.30 am and we all were! Today we go to the mausoleum, it is set in a huge open area with all the roads blocked off so everyone has to walk in and around. The Mausoleum is set up quite high with lots of steps each one seems to be guarded by an armed policeman. Up we went and into an ice chamber, it really was like walking into a deep freeze, on and on we walked passing armed guards all the way until we came to the big chamber in the middle and there to our amazement was Ho Chi Minh lying in state in his open coffin! We were not to talk or stop but there were gasps and I did stop only to be moved right along by the guard. Who would have though we would be seeing a long dead body lying in all its majesty. Then I thought I am sure Ho Chi Minh was cremated but maybe I am wrong. Seems not as when we got outside in the hot sunshine our Guide Quang told us Uncle Ho's lifestory in infinite detail and finally said he had been cremated and the 'body' was a wax work dummy.

We were then taken along a lovely garden path beside a stream to the little house on stilts that Ho Chi Minh lived towards the last and in fact he died there in the simple little house like he had grown up in, it is still in exactly the same state as when he left it.

We also saw the empty Presidential Palace within the same complex, it is only used for visiting dignitaries now. A big impressive building.
We then were taken to an ancient Temple of literature, a sort of university of the old times where rich and special people were trained and enlightened..This a statue of the great teacher.

 There were lovely gardens all around it and a bride was having her photos taken there.

By now it was lunchtime so we were hurried back to the Hotel for a very nice lunch.  Next thing we are called out to go for a lovely Rickshaw ride around the narrow streets of old Hanoi. This was just lovely, having a little man bike pedal you around felt pretty good even if he was darn dangerous the way he  took very little notice of traffic just biked where he wanted to go, others went around us, once a large bus very nearly took us out, but he somehow manoeuvred around.safely.
We were taken past a big lake and also past many monuments, I was intrigued by the power lines all bunched up, a real dangerous mess.

The rickshaws took all 46 of us in style to a special Water Puppet show. Something I had never seen or heard of, the puppeteers all work from behind a curtain with their puppets on long poles, with these they told many stories while a noisy drummer and other musicians and a screaming type singer took the tale .... Vietnamese of cause so it was kind of lost on us, even though we are all trying to learn a few words of the language so as to talk a bit with locals.

After the puppet show it was back the Hotel to dress for dinner, We all went out to a big flash restaurant for a wonderful meal again with Dorothy and Winnifred, pictured is one of the  lovely 5 courses, Fish wrapped in banana leaves, really lovely., 

after which we all wandered back to Hotel for well deserved snooze.


Cloudia said...

Wow! You made me gasp as well!

ALOHA from Honolulu
=^..^= . <3 . >< } } (°>

L. D. said...

I am really enjoying your travels. I need to catch up on the past posts.