At the Mekong Delta Day 2..One Year Ago

Day 2 of Mekong Delta tour. We left the hotel early to catch the morning floating markets. First stop was at Cai Rang. I was expecting a lot of boats selling all kinds of colorful vegetables & noisy locals haggling for a better price.

Can’t help to say I was a bit disappointed but still, all these are interesting and new to me as I have lived all my life in a city.

Next we went to Phong Dien, which is less crowded. Maybe we were too late and should have been there much earlier. However, it was just around 8 in the morning. I guess I was just expecting too much.

After the floating markets, our tourist boat took us to a vermicelli noodle factory. Almost everything was still the traditional way of making noodles, except for the cutting part. Too bad, there wasn’t any free tasting. I was feeling a bit hungry that time since the complimentary breakfast served to us was just bread, fried egg and tea/coffee.

After having lunch at the hotel, next on the itinerary was a visit to the crocodile farm. The place got a lot of crocodiles of various sizes.

One thing is certain, no matter what size, ALL of them were scary. I wouldn’t even dream of getting near one!

I have seen how these reptiles ate a zebra on National Geographic Channel but the caretaker/ guide told us that these crocodiles were fish-fed. Have you ever asked why crocodiles always have their mouths hanging open? It’s not because they are hungry and ready to hunt. It is their way to cool themselves since they have no sweat glands.

It was a long, uncomfortable mini van ride to Chau Doc where we spent the second night. I can’t wait to get to the hotel since we started the day so early and I was very tired. Last on the second day itinerary was a climb up the Sam Mountain to see the Cave Pagoda.

From the pagoda, you can see vast green rice fields. Beyond that is Cambodia. It may be a bit strange for some but at that time, I find it amazing that from where I was standing, I can see even from afar, another country which I haven’t been to. You see, my country, the Philippines, is an archipelago. There’s no way to see another country even if you go to the northernmost or southernmost tip. I remember feeling excited thinking that just beyond those rice fields is a whole new culture, another place I would soon visit. I didn’t experience Cambodia until 3 months from that day because we liked Vietnam a lot and stayed for 2 whole months!

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