The funniest thing happened when we got to Nha Trang, which is the main resort here in Vietnam. Walking around the quiet town after dinner, on our first night out (and feeling increasingly disappointed by the fact that no one actually seems to go out here after dark) we happened across a bar jammed full of a coachload of fat sex tourists from Manchester who, every year, went on holiday to some poor part of the world ‘to party’ as they politely put it (meaning to get drunk and have sex with cheap prostitutes.) After their last years excursion to Pattaya, one of them suggested what perhaps looked like on paper, a similar place in Vietnam, Nha Trang.
Funnily enough all the more idiotic (i.e. lonely planet) guidebooks do say that it’s a ‘party town’ kind of place, with people on the beachfront being accosted by ‘kamakaze hookers and pimps’ but back in the real world, this simply is not true, the beachfront has a couple of half empty quite upmarket bars/restaurants populated by random Russian families eating dinner and groaning about the weather.
What no one seemed to mention to our amorous heroes, is that Vietnam hasn’t been ‘that kind of place’ since the GI’s prowled about in 1967, and nowadays this town is host to 20,000 package tour families a month from Siberia, American Vietnamese returnees, and assorted backpackers - and no prostitutes.
So as I listened to their morose tale, it seemed these guys had spent the last 3 days scouring the whole town for ‘brassers’ as they call them, not to find a single one so, much to the benefit of the ladies of the world, were destined to spend their annual holiday week here in the rain, with only the Manchester United match and Saigon beer for company. Complete Sex Tourist Fail!
Anyway, more on Nha Trang later, my $2 lunch just arrived!