Monday, December 31, 2012

Cai Be (12/31/2012)

Still Monday, December 31, 2012
Our 14:30 excursion found us once again floating along in a water bus. It was not a very busy day for the floating market in Cai Be.
It is like a floating wholesale market, and cargo boats place their product on a pole to show what is for sale.
This boat has jicamas:
A marine gas station:
Boy trying to fly a kite:
The machine shop for engine repairs:
TV antennas:
The tapioca/cassava vendor is asleep on the job:
This gas station owner has done well enough to build a new house:

We stopped to visit a candy manufacturer. First we saw how puffed rice is made.
Oiled rice kernels are put in a bowl of heated sand to pop or puff:
Then it is sifted to get out the sand and rice husks:
Some puffed rice with unpuffed rice in it:
Next we saw mass rice krispie treat production.
They first heat a mixture of oil, shredded coconut, and palm sugar:
Here they tossed in some puffed rice with peanuts:
Two guys did the mixing dance, scooping with their sticks as they circled around the bowl:
Roll out the mixture:
And cut into squares to be packaged.
Now, to see coconut caramels in the making.
Grating the coconut meat:
Put the shredded coconut in a fabric bag and press out the oil/juice:
Heat to caramelize:
Press out into forms:
Cut into cubes and package:
There was also a rice wine still:
Snake wine samples were given out:
Wait, there's more! Making rice paper.
Pour a reduction of rice onto a piece of taut fabric over heat and spread until thin:
Steam for about 10 seconds, then carefully remove:
Robbie takes a turn:
Drying rice paper:
These are cut into small squares to wrap the caramels, and they can be eaten.
A Luffa aegyptiaca/Luffa Sponge Gourd:
A photo op with Susan and Harvey and a python (the latter lives in the rice fields):
We were able to sample goodies:
There were also souvenirs for sale, such as cobra and scorpion wine:
When all the shopping was done, we returned to the RV Indochina by water bus.

At our Farewell Cocktail Party, we had a performance of traditional Vietnamese music.
Instruments showcased were the dan nhi/2-string fishhook violin:
The dan nguyet/moon-shaped 2-string lute:
The Vietnamized 5-string guitar with scalloped fretboard:
And the dan bau/Vietnamese monochord:
After a Farewell Dinner, we had sort of a New Year's Party where we were to wear our decorated conical hats:
There were some contests and we participated in one where a couple had to stand on a decreasingly smaller piece of paper without hanging over the edges. We outlasted the others, but upon trying the final smallest size, we keeled over and fell on the floor. Fortunately, I went backwards and had a soft landing, so all was well. They gave us the prize (a book about the Pandaw ships) anyway!
Tomorrow, Ho Chi Minh City 1 Orientation.

Sa Dec 2 Market (12/31/2012)

Still Monday, December 31, 2012
Our water bus took us from the brick factory to the Sa Dec town market.
A fisherman on the riverside of the market stalls:
Produce going to market:
Chau Doc Market:
A lunch opportunity where we disembarked for the market:
Looong load:
They really wear coolie hats here:
White eggplants:
"Money" for sale:
To be burned for use of your ancestors.
This lady is pulling open a duck!
This one is trying to weigh a wiggling fish:
Colorful fabrics:
Curcuma longa/Turmeric rhizomes:
Probably ducks' blood:
Colocasia esculenta var./Taro tubers:
Tea preparation of Pandanus amaryllifolius/pandan leaves:
Happy vendor:
Blossoms for cooking; these are pumpkin flowers:
Banana "flowers:"
Big chicken feet:
Rice varieties:
Feather duster for the top of the bus:
Dried stuff:
Fluta alba/Asian Swamp Eels?:
River snails:
Winged beans:
Fish ball meat:
Snakes and turtles:
At the wholesale market, shallots:
Small watermelons:
Tamarind pods:
Rose apples:
Tiny truck:
From the movie and book "l'Amant," the author has a love affair with the son of the Chinese family living here:
Reception hall:
Doorway where you can push the wooden poles across the opening to bar entry, but allow ventilation:
Main hall:
Continuing down the street, dried beans and pasta:
Plastic goods:
Drying water coconut husks:
We returned to the RV Indochina for lunch, and to set sail for Cai Be.
Next, Cai Be.