Thursday, May 22, 2008

Day 13 HCMC

Today we rose early to get on our way out of the city. On our way to our first destination we were awe struck by perfectly planted trees that popped out of nowhere. We had found our first rubber plantation first established by the French with the sweat and blood of the Vietnamese during its early colonization of the country. We stopped and ventured out into the erry darkness of the grove, perfectly aligned in all directions. We then traveled on to our first stop, the Cu Chi Tunnels first started to be dug in the 1940’s and then fully developed in the 1960’s to the chagrin of many an American troops. The 180 miles of tunnels, 40 miles from Saigon housed the Cu Chi community in three levels underground with all they needed for surviving and fighting the Southern regime. Next we traveled to the Cao Dai Temple for noon time prayer. Here is a very beautifully ornate temple was the mix of three religions praying together in one place. Men and women on separate sides of the temple, eldest most front. The leaders in specific colors, Buddhists in golden yellow, Confucians in Red, and Christians in a medium blue. What an awesome sight, all praying together in harmony. Surely God is in this place. After a wonderful lunch near the temple we traveled to Black Lady Mountain. There we took the cable car up to the mountain top where we visited temples above ground and in a cave and were entertained not only by the view but by wild monkeys as well. At some point during the day we were only 14 miles from the border with Cambodia. We arrived late into the city for dinner after dark but all agreed it was a wonderful day trip. Catherine


Monica Neal said...


Barbara said...

Kime-Happy Birthday from Grandma and Aunt Barbara.
Amazed at the tunnels, 180 miles..Wow. The wonder of different faiths together, in prayer.
This is Memorial Day weekend..a time to remember and give thanks.
Continue the safe journey.

Dark_Knight said...

If my memory serves me correctly, I do believe that my dad was once in Saigon when he was in the Navy but I can't remember if it was before, during or after the Vietnam war. Probably not during. It makes me sad and happy to see the pictures. I wish I could be there. It makes me think alot of my dad. How I miss him now. When do you all come back home?

SAPC - Vietnam 2008 said...

Thanks for the birthday notes! I believe we get back on the 27th/28th of May. Tomorrow morning we leave Vietnam for Hong Kong. My parents and I will have a few fun days of wandering around. Ah! Got to run to the market - talk to you all later!

Bob said...

In May of 1968, I left St. Andrews. In June of 1969, I arrived at Chu Chi, divsion base camp for the 25th Infantry Division. The tunnels were real and the VC effective. We were more effective. In August, we moved to a Fire Support Base under the Black Lady Mountain (Nui Ba Den) and conducted combat operations around and on the mountain. I left in January, 1970.

I attended college at St.Andrews. I was educated in Cu Chi, Tay Ninh, and at Nui Ba Den.