Jan 25, 2019 - Jahan
Today was our last full day on the river, and we spent it well, cruising through the Lower Mekong River in Vietnam. We set anchor near the town of Sa Dec, taking that morning to venture along the neighboring island of Binh Tanh. It began on a local sampan boat, transiting small waterways of rafts carrying water hyacinth in all directions. When we arrived at Binh Tanh, we stopped to see locals in the village weave together the traditional reed mats they have made for many years, if not decades. On one occasion we witnessed the amazing sight of a woman making furniture out of the very hyacinth we had seen transported by raft that morning!
In the afternoon, cultural expert Paula Swart gave a talk on Vietnamese shipwrecks as we positioned the ship toward our afternoon destination of Cai Be. Once we arrived, we again boarded the local sampan boats, heading off to another waterfront village. Rather than reed mats and furniture, however, on this island, workers busied themselves over candies and rice alcohol. It was a fantastic day on the Mekong and an opportune one to learn a few small intricacies of the greater Vietnamese culture!
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