My trip to Vietnam was about as important a part of my life as the Vietnam in the 1960s. A friend of mine, a Vietnam vet, was flying to Viet Nam to take a look at the country, the Vietnamese people, and the way they fought. He found that the whole country had a strange feeling of freedom and was amazed at what was happening.
At the time, I had no clue what was going on and I was only in college. But it was a trip that I’ll always remember. It was a trip that I wish I had taken in the ’60s, where the war was far from over and the Vietnamese people were still fighting. I wish I had taken a trip in Vietnam when it was still in the ’60s and Vietnam was the most open and free country in the world.
I don’t remember the specifics of Ill’s trip, but I’m pretty sure he was traveling to see the famous Hanoi-Paris-Dien Bien Phu Highway, which is one of the longest and the most scenic roads in the world. There was no traffic, no one was around, and it actually seemed as if they could get there and back in under an hour. The only thing that was different was that no one in Vietnam seemed to know what was going on.
What I found interesting about the Vietnam trip was the fact that the route was quite short, but the fact that the route was free and easy to get to is a bonus. In addition, the map wasn’t really bad either, and I can only imagine that the route would have been much easier on the public if the tourists were being paid for a ride.
I do remember that when we got there the map looked as if it was just a blank black field. One thing I found odd was the lack of roads, which is a pretty big deal because this is one of the countries that is often prone to flooding and landslides and mudslides.
The Vietnamese government recently started to enforce more strict rules requiring businesses and people to register the amount of money they are claiming for the ride. As a result, some travel blogs are now warning against “hoaxes” claiming that a ride on one of their trips is actually free. Of course, this is a very common tactic in other countries.
It’s not very common, but with the country so flooded, it’s very easy to get lost. And then, of course, there’s the weather. There are two separate reasons. First, the weather is just so unpredictable in Vietnam. It’s like having one of those games where you can go home having lost a game, only to find that you’ve lost your house, your car, your credit cards, and so on.
I’m not saying that the weather is bad, it’s just that in the last few days the weather is so unpredictable that every time you spend time trying to find your way home, it can be a pretty big deal.
This is a bit of a “if you have to ask, you probably won’t” scenario. I mean, I’m not saying that Vietnam is perfect, nor that life in Vietnam is perfect, but life in Vietnam is not nearly as bad as some of the other places Ive been to.
Granted you could do a lot worse, but I would recommend finding someone to drive you around to a few different places. It could be so much fun. You could even pick up a friend or two. You could go to the beach, or you could go to the mountains, or you could go to the countryside, and just go from there.