The last full day in Vietnam I spent exploring Ho Chi Minh City on my own, first stop the War Atrocities Museum. Surrounded by studiously note-taking but cheerful Vietnamese school kids, I stood in front of the photographs and cried. Cried for our violent responses to fear, mis-guided interference in a country's right to self-determination, needless loss of life, general degradation of human goodness and spirit. On leaving, I thought a walk through the Botanical Garden would be just the balm my soul needed - wrong! As is often the case, the Botanical is combined with the Zoological Garden, in this case full of unhealthy animals in dirty pens.
I did run into a valiant group of SAS students, trying desperately to keep track of a large group of deaf Vietnamese children running amuck through the zoo. Not an easy task!!