|We went to a candy factory on the river bank. It was extremely small and was in operation mainly for the tourist trade. They demonstrated how to make puffed or popped rice. They heat up a giant pan that looks like a wok, add sand to increase the heat and pour in the rice. Stirring it, it pops and then is removed and pored through multiple filters to strain out the sand. They also had stations where they made candy and rice paper. Ted also sampled snake wine. It was terrible!
After lunch we sailed down the Mekong on our “big” sampans where we transferred 3 at a time onto small sampans powered by standing women rowing the boats. They are Vietnamese gondolas.
We disembarked at another village where we observed women making baskets out of dried water hyacinths. We strolled around the village watching out for motorbikes. We witnessed karaoke at a party. They sing loud and very enthusiastically. As in all of rural Vietnam, it also is very poor. People build houses in stages. They build what they can afford and add on as funds become available. One home took 10 years to complete.