Monday, February 25, 2008


For the last few days it's been raining in the night. I keep forgetting to look out the windows around eleven o'clock. Later, when I wander by a window, the roads are shiny and the traffic is wearing plastic raingear. One of my favorite moments, scarce now that the rainy season is over, comes just when the rain begins to fall. All the scooters pull to the sidewalks and drivers rummage around in the storage area under the seat for their thin plastic poncho. These are usually clear, and tinted pink, purple, yellow, or et cetera. Later, the drivers all hop back onto their rides and gun on down the road and the moment is gone. But for that interval at the blustery onset, there's a silent attenuation of the chaotic flow as traffic parts and stops. Afterward, for the duration of the rain, the road is haunted with an Easter variety of rolling pastel ghosts. But the rainy season has been over since November and sometimes a month moves by without even a short drizzle. I'd really like to get outside during one of these recent nightly rains. If not, I'll content myself with the spring-like luster these last few days: breezy and clearly sunny, the twittering birds and bright green plants daily giving way to the clearest nights I've seen in Vietnam. Occasionally I've been able to see the moon at night here, but it mostly rises behind Hồ Chí Minh City's pervasive haze, murkily lightening one discrete dot of the sky. Tonight I can even see stars here and there, and the moon rose so stunningly over the Caravel Hotel it stole my attention from the very special Christmas episode of 21 Jumpstreet (where it is revealed that Harry is really a South Vietnamese refugee). [Cavin]

Then, a 0 sided conversation ensued...

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