Today we visited Vung tau, which was a 3-hour bus ride. The day started with a walk up a hill to the Christ of Vung Tau. It was the first day we’ve really been outside for an extended period of time. The heat was tough but not the worst I’ve ever experienced. At the top you can go inside, walk up, and onto Jesus’ shoulder for one of the most incredible views I’ve ever seen. The journey to get there though was an adventure. It must be the narrowest staircase on the planet in the statue, and there are people going both ways. The hill was covered with colorful flowers of white and pink, and stones, and dragonflies. It was really quite an awe-inspiring scene. Unfortunately, there was many people behind, waiting to see the view so I couldn’t stay up there all day. A couple minutes is not enough time to take it all in.
We then had lunch at the resort we were staying at for the day. Today’s lunch highlights to me were the caesar salad, and the crispy squid with chili sauce. The resort felt exactly how any resort feels in America. The only real difference I could spot was the addition of a “cold tub” off the side of the pool instead of a hot tub. The cold tub was a welcome addition for the day.
On the ride back I saw some of the less developed area of Vietnam. The land was mostly swamp land. It seemed to be quite polluted to me. With a country as rapidly growing as Vietnam that’s bound to happen, but the development in the city’s only evidence was the pollution. A common theme on the trip is struggling a place to put or own waste. We had talked about this at the U.S Consulate yesterday as well. The rapid urbanization caused by all this development is leaving rural areas to suffer in some cases. I hope I’ll get a better perspective on this when we visit the Mekong later this week.