Sunset in Dalat

Dalat is the favorite destination for Vietnamese to go on their honeymoon.  The high elevation keeps temperatures cool, cool enough to need a jacket to keep warm.  I visited Dalat during Christmas break in 2004 and took this shot outside of town while visiting Lang Bian Mountain.  My dad was actually posted on Lang Bian Mountain for part of the Vietnam War, so it was very interesting to visit the spot where his base was.  We climbed up to the top of the mountain and as we were walking down the sun was setting and I took some shots.  Beautiful country.

Hilltribes Woman

Living in the midland hills of Vietnam does not make for an easy life.  This woman bears the marks of intense labor.  This was taken on a visit to the central portion of Vietnam with my sister over Christmas break (she was teaching English in Cambodia).

Table for Two?

Out in the rural hills near Dalat there are beautiful landscapes created by farmers like these two, eating breakfast before heading back out into the fields.  These farmers are minorities, meaning they are not ethnic Vietnamese and so they are allowed to farm for themselves, giving only a portion to the government (at one time they were to give all of their profits to the government, but then they did not work).  It is a hard life, but it seems life is at least getting a little better than it has been in the past.  The hats they wear are traditional Vietnamese hats (Nón lá), a very effective way of keeping the sun off the wearer.

The Bean at Night (Cloud Gate)

Ok, so this wasn’t taken in Cambodia or anywhere in South East Asia, but I couldn’t resist posting this image of “The Bean” or the Cloud Gate which I took on a visit to Chicago with some of my family.  The image doesn’t quite capture the whole feeling, but it is quite an amazing piece of art.  At the 23 million dollar price tag, I guess it should be good…

Waterfront Slums

When we think of waterfront we normally have a beautiful scene in mind, a huge house with beachfront property.  But this is another place, another situation.  I took this shot in Vietnam while traveling by river.  Thousands upon thousands of these shanties are put up on the banks of the many rivers all across South East Asia, where the poor and destitute live.

Boats in a Row

During a visit to Nha Trang, Vietnam I saw these colorful fishing boats in the harbor and took a shot.  The beaches there are excellent, and the scuba diving superb.  The city is very simple, and quite clean – something Vietnam is in contrast to much of Cambodia.

Laotian Girl

I took this shot on my first trip to Laos, very early during my time in Cambodia.  We were walking along a road and just observing how the people lived and I saw this little girl carrying out the dishes and snapped a few pictures.  Laos is a very oppressed country, pooer even than Cambodia.  And yet one suprise for us, they had more paved roads than Cambodia did!

Old Vietnamese Woman

This woman was sitting at an old Vietnamese Buddhist temple in Central Vietnam and was kind enough to let me take her picture.

Lion Shine

This statue is at a temple on Sam Mountain in Southern Vietnam. From the top you can see the boarder of Cambodia as well as a multitude of rice fields in between.

Bridgefall

This pristine little place is found in central Vietnam.  This was shot around Christmas in 2004 while I toured around Vietnam with my sister on vacation.  It is the farthest north I have been, but I hope to make it farther north in the future.

Smiling Rower

This was shot in Vietnam during the yearly water festival in 2005.  The area, known as Kampuchea Krom, used to be part of Cambodia, but in 1623, Khmer king, Chey Chettha the second, allowed Vietnamese, fleeing civil war in Vietnam, to settle in the city of Prey Nokor.  Soon Cambodians were a minority in the Mekong Delta area, and because of their weakened state resulting in a war with Thailand, the area was largely in control by the Vietnamese, and soon and the city of Preah Nokor was renamed Saigon.  The land became officially part of Vietnam in 1954 as a result of the French pulling out of Indochina and giving the land to Vietnam despite protest by Cambodia.  During the regime of the Khmer Rouge, the land was invaded which then led Vietnam to invade Cambodia, and really put a stop to the Khmer Rouge genocide.

4,000 Islands Girl

This picture was taken early 2003 during a trip to the Four Thousand Islands region of the Mekong River in Laos.  This was on Don Khong, the biggest island in the region, and we stopped to talk with some of the locals.  This shot comes from that encounter.  The Mekong in this area spreads about 6 miles across forming many, many islands before it rushes over the famous Khone Phe Peng Waterfall.