In the Cu Chi Tunnel

October 22. At 8:00 a.m. after breakfast, our guide meets us at the hotel. On the hour and a half ride, we have a far-ranging discussion with Hoan about the issues Vietnam faces today, as well as subjects as far afield as soccer. Hoan is apparently an excellent player and travels with teams to play […]


October 21.  At 8:00 a.m. Our guide, Hoan (pronounced like Juan) picks us up at the hotel. Hoan is 39, married with two children, and is originally from the central part of the country, where both his grandfather and father fought on the side of the Vietnam Cong. After the war they migrated down to […]

First day in Saigon

October 20.  Spent the couple hour layover in the Hong Kong business club, where I managed to post yesterday’s blog, AND learn that the Cubs had won. Three more to go. Uneventful 21/2 hour flight to Saigon allowed me to finish EXIT WEST, which was excellent. Since we left for the airport inChicago at noon […]


October 18-19. We ride with our friends, Nancy Schaefer and Chet Kamin, to O’Hare from which we are flying Cathay Pacific, through Hong Kong, to Ho Chi Minh City, formerly called Saigon. (Originally, we were to fly Korean Air, through Seoul, but Nancy was concerned about flying through Korea, given the current political climate, so […]

Preparing for Vietnam

Okay, ready to go again? We head out to Vietnam for two weeks on Wednesday.

As followers of this blog know, I generally start out with background on the country, stolen shamelessly from several sources. So, if you think you’ve detected some stylistic irregularities, some repetition and maybe even an inconsistency or two in what […]