"Rice Harvest in the Mekong Delta Region"
"Cao Dai Temple"
We traveled by buses, boats, and planes. As we traveled out of Ho Chi Minh City, we saw this amazing scene of rural produce being delivered to the city. This was, of course, a common sight.
Rural produce heads to market
The bus trips gave us opportunities to view the more rural areas of the countries. On our travels to the Mekong Delta, we saw the great rice fields where the country people tended their harvest. This is extremely hard work, as the person is standing or squatting in water. Mostly this is considered women's work, but I saw quite a few men working as well. The scene is colorful, because the Vietnamese wear their conical hats, a wonderful invention to protect from sun while allowing air circulation. The hats were not prevalent in the other countries we visited.
The spiritual life is ever present. We stopped at a Cao Dai temple, which later I realized was a very different temple after seeing many traditional Buddhist and Hindu places of worship. The religion is unique and colorful, founded in the 1920s. It combines secular and religious philosophies, and is based on séance messages revealed to its founder, Ngo Minh Chien. Because the Vietnamese people revere their ancestors, the religion makes sense to me. What struck me was the lavish use of neon in this temple, something you did not see at the many other temples we visited. I chose to paint a part of the façade.
Family ancestors buried in the Mekong rice fields.
Heading out of Danang, we climbed the mountains and were treated to this view.