Small Demon
May 112009
 

I’m in Hue now. This morning Lan’s friend (now my friend) Tran Thu Mai took me to a beautiful pagoda in the mountains northeast of Hue, then on a tourn of the Nguyen court’s citadel, where many of the palaces and temples have been beautifully restored. After a brief rest and cool down at my hotel, I took a walk around the city on the south side of the river. Only mad dogs and Americans go out in the early afternoon sun of Hue, but I went slowly and drank lots of water as I walked. I came back with my clothes soaked through with sweat and gratefully absorbed the hotel’s air conditioning for a couple of hours before heading out for dinner. Went to a little neighborhoos place Mai recommended for pho, then wandered to a sort of western style cafe where they have American movies on a big TV with Vietnamese subtitles. They turn the sound off on the movies and play western pop music, most of which is a generation or two recent for me to have heard it, but the have very good taste and it’s a weirdly enjoyable place to have a drink and bend one’s mind around the cultural complexities of globalization.

  2 Responses to “And it’s Not a Dry Heat (VN Diary No. 31)”

  1. what a fine post this is hopefully comprehending the changing new as if describing clouds scudding across the sky. finding joy in the ending where you write “…bend one’s mind around the cultural complexities of globalization.” ed

  2. edward mycue’s appreciation of your trip descriptions is well-deserved. it is interesting to read these entries, I find the reflections about language very interesting and I surely hope your efforts with these poets and your trip continues well.

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