06 Mar 2014
Somehow I have a friend, Mike Ross, who has lived here for several years. Just recently he opened up the poker room at Queenco Casino, about 5 minutes from our ship.
He and his lovely wife Phear met us with a giant bouquet of flowers for Allyn.
This afternoon they had a 40-person poker tournament in our honor. Four of our pals from the ship even joined us.
Of course they insisted on treating us to the obligatory sensational lunch.
03 Mar 2014
It’s Sunday night at 10:00 PM and still busy. It was another good evening with great food, service, ambiance and company at HCMC’s current “in” place – Chill Skybar and 27 Grill Restaurant.
The outdoor bar 27 floors up was quite special.
I like how the ship brings along their own basketball court (and bikes etc) for the crew to enjoy personal time off.
01 Mar 2014
HCMC never ceases to amaze. It just keeps getting even more frenetic if that is possible.
The massages are still great but foot massages now push $10/hour.
Somehow their food is so light, delicate and good amidst all of the turmoil.
28 Feb 2014
I saw a very good movie today – Captain Philips, allegedly based on the true story of the 2009 hijacking by Somali pirates of a US cargo ship. It was the first American cargo ship to be hijacked in two hundred years.
Interestingly the movie makes him out to be quite the hero. In real life there is a $50 Million lawsuit by the crew against the company for wanton disregard for their safety.
He is said to have been so arrogant that he consistantly disregarded anti-piracy protocols. Then at the beginning of the attack he even refused to let the crew go to the anti-piracy stations, because he felt their lifeboat drill was more important.
It was particularly chilling watching the movie on a ship headed towards Africa.
27 Feb 2014
As usual, Allyn finds an activity.
We docked at Chan May this morning. It is pretty much dead center between North and South Vietnam during the War.
Over the Internet I had hired Tommy Dao (firstname.lastname@example.org) to guide us and three other couples for the day. It was a good move.
We saw Da Nang’s aptly named dragon bridge.
Then we visited the famous China beach, which really is Da Nang Beach, but was nicknamed by the servicemen during the war.
Next stop was Marble Mountain and beautiful jade carvings.
Most of the day was spent in Hoi An, a lovely rebuilt city with none of the hustle or filth of Saigon.