Your say (06-02-2008) We want to publish your experiences of the lunar new year. We know that the spring festival is the most important for Vietnamese. But what of expatriates and visitors? Is it a time to relax? Or perhaps, it’s a time of difficulty with shops closed, food scarce and a deep sense of isolation as Vietnamese friends and acquaintances devote themselves to their families? What do You Say? Mail your opinions or questions to: [email protected] fax: +8449332311 snail mail: The Editor, Viet Nam News, 11 Tran Hung Dao Street, Ha Noi. Your full name and a contact address would be appreciated. … [Read more...] about Your say (06-02-2008)
Next week: Ha Noi Culture, Sports and Tourism Department has suggested creating real jobs for penniless country workers to stop them becoming street vendors and beggars. There have been many complaints about how they harass or overcharge foreign tourists. They are a common sight throughout the Old Quarter despite continued efforts to bring them under control. Fines seem too low to deter them. They can only be remanded in custody for 12 hours when caught. Some pay a fine of VND150,000 (US$7.5) when found operating without permits. Police estimate about 130 cases of annoying and harassing tourists have been reported so far this year – and, apparently, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Do you think that finding work for penniless country migrants would work? Could you recommend other alternatives from your country's experience? For further information, readers can see the article "Cops want crackdown on tourist hustlers" published in the Viet Nam News on November 1. Please reply … [Read more...] about Your say (02-11-2012)
Last week, Việt Nam News asked its readers about a proposal of a ban on sales of liquor and beer after 10pm, aiming to reduce the negative impacts of drinking. Here are some of their ideas: Andrew Burden, Canadian in Hà Nội Late night drinking cannot be solved by locking the fridge at 10pm. Sales will go underground. People will start home brewing. It's counterintuitive, but you should open up 24/7. CNN just reported about a 'night mayor' (as opposed to nightmare) in Amsterdam. The idea is he goes around with uniformed volunteers, acting as dad, friend, and unofficial tour guide. He and his volunteers help people into taxis and step between rowdy drunks ready to fight. Of course no one should get drunk, but when you have one drink, your thinking becomes fuzzy and it's easy to order another, then another. It's really up to the bar to cut you off. Maybe by midnight there should be low alcohol-content drinks or drinking-with-food orders only? When I was a young buck, I came up with … [Read more...] about Ban on late-night alcohol sales: what’s your say?
Your say (15-02-2008) The spring festival is the most important celebration of the year in Viet Nam. Expatriates and visitors share with Viet Nam News their Lunar New Year experiences. David Frogier, Germany This is the second time I have had the chance to celebrate Tet in Viet Nam. This year I was fortunate enough to be able to spend the holiday with a Vietnamese family – so I experienced Tet first hand. Although spending time with the family is central to the celebrations, I had the impression that for most Vietnamese families it’s not a relaxing time at all. From dawn till dusk they are taking care of visitors, serving them all kinds of food and drink. I was quite impressed with the way people had managed to buy enough food and drink to last the whole week. In Europe, Christmas celebrations only last three days, but that is enough to fill up people’s fridges. I’m very fond of the traditions surrounding Tet, such as the significance of the house altar and the … [Read more...] about Your say (15-02-2008)
Your say (10-05-2008) Blame and solutions for rising food costs Sunil B., Indian tourist In India we still talk proudly about our Green Revolution. In the 1960s, India could scarcely feed itself. Then our farmers were given varieties of basic grains that had much higher yields, developed by international scientists, including the famous "Miracle Rice." India went from importing rice and wheat to being a major exporter, and the price of these staples kept dropping. Now India has the same jitters you’re talking about here – we imported wheat this year for the first time in decades. Prices are rising again, even, as you said, in places like Viet Nam where there are no shortages because we’re in a globalised economy. Also for that reason, the scale of the factors at work that you listed – population, less land, fuel costs, global warming – means that no amount of rice we grow will fix the problem, at least in Asia. The answer has to do with what we’re … [Read more...] about Your say