Wash away

Rain pours so hard here in Saigon. It feels like a city wash. Yet bike traffic never ceases.

Wet city streets didn’t stop weekend spontaneous racing.

Hard-earned money got washed away just as quickly as it is earned, mostly at beer stalls. People press RESET and go on. It’s not too different elsewhere.

Just differs in intensity and speed. Beer consumption is now ranked in the top 3 countries.

BBC News ranked Vietnam as number 7 most-risked nation in internet security.

In life, I also noticed an army of private security at every establishment.

It is not unusual to walk into a night club, just to find yourself surrounded by people: server, waitress, security and manager.

This spontaneous entourage would empty your wallet as quickly as a New York minute.

Meanwhile, everyone else is asleep, occasionally disrupted by the sound of street racing.

And when it rains again the next day, everything seems to take second place to the one and only priority: stay dry and stay alive (with bikers in front and next to you splashing water into your face). Pedestrian lights are now installed, with visible count-down to allow enough time for an amputated man to crawl across the street.

I admire his drive to survive here. And to everyone, it seems like a daily walk in Central Park.

I too press RESET a lot while here. A splash in the States will only be a free windshield wash. But everyone here seems to take nature’s disruption in stride. I have seen bikers talking on the phone, smoking while zig zagging through an alley. Or in the back seat, not just a lady with a cone hat. But the lady with a cone hat and her two baskets of donuts, balancing on her shoulders with a cane. Anything and everything is transported on wheels . Rain or tears couldn’t stop people in motion. Storm only serves as city-wash. It will take a few more decades to clear away the legacy of war, making way for peace and true prosperity. By the time you finish reading this, our amputated man has already crossed the street on his hands, asking you to buy a lottery ticket. He has already emerged a winner in my book.



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