Friday, August 22, 2008


In case you haven't noticed, I have recently added a number of new things to my photo sharing page. They are all pictures taken shortly before last Christmas around downtown Hồ Chí Minh City, showing a selection of the decorations that were up at the time. Some of the decorations are pretty standard department store window dressing, I guess, but some things are a little bit stranger. For example, one large diorama erected near the popular park just southwest of Reunification Palace along Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai Street boasted a Christmas ark, with Buddhist iconography on the sails, piloted by Santa and his trusty German Shepherd.1 Over in the same area, behind a family of snowmen smiling over a stack of wrapped packages, stood an interested giraffe.2 In another picture, Santa's reindeer face off against a band of sneaky looking polar bears.3 Everywhere there were chunky Styrofoam icebergs and cool-looking blue paint, an attempt to mask the fact that the temperature was in the high eighties Fahrenheit and tropically sunny that Christmas Eve. There's just something special about Christmas among the green trunks of fruit-laden palms. (And I thought it seemed weird in the sunny semi-autumn of northern México.) Those photos begin here. Also, here is another Friday Matinee video posted today, my first direct ode to traffic in downtown Hồ Chí Minh City. Don't get too excited before clicking, all my movies are pretty half-baked. I've managed to get the image in focus and exposed correctly at long last, which represents some improvement over the videos here and here. The intersection I filmed is two blocks away from our apartment, looking north up Pasteur Street from the corner at Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai again. The oncoming traffic in the video is crossing into District One from Three. [Cavin]

Then, a 0 sided conversation ensued...

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