Vietnam Airlines is Vietnam's flagship carrier. I find that when I travel in Asia, I'm often with VNA either by virtue that my travel agent is working exclusively with the airline or simply that it is one of the fastest emerging airlines. If only the airport immigration and customs would respond as quickly to the challenge of increased international traffic.
Speaking of traffic. The street sign above indicates that there is a one-way street prohibiting cyclos. In Saigon, one-way means any-way where it really needs a subway.
As hard as try, I cannot prevent this bat from finding a way into my house. Every night for nearly six months now, even with all windows closed, it returns to chill out on the same ceiling lamp for a couple hours. I imagine it to be like relaxing in a sauna after eating a big meal of crab apples. It knows better to leave before the house keeper arrives.
Le Fenetre Soleil. One of Saigon's best places to relax. Comfortable seating, good muffins and tea. On the pricey side, but if you're entertaining visitors in the city, you can't but hit a homerun here.
We Have No Bananas Today
This cafe is a nightmare. Customers expect from a franchise business to ensure that products, identity and services are uniform in each location. Not with this company. One of Vietnam's largest and most recognized franchises, Trung Nguyen Coffee is all over the board in terms of quality, image and service. It ranges from hardwood and upholstered furniture in air conditioned spaces to roof leaks with rats running between your legs. But for the most part, whatever the ambience the staff usually tries to see that you get what you order - which is why we were so suprised at the hostility we experienced at the 7-story megacafe Trung Nguyen on 128 Nguyen Dinh Chieu in District 3.
The Scoop: The menu features a Banana Split along with description of ingredients. It reads  scoops of vanilla ice cream,  each of chocolate and strawberry, a banana and a chantilly cookie. We receive one scoop of melted durian ice cream instead of the two vanilla and no banana. Furthermore, we are accosted for misinterpreting the image and printed description in the menu. According to the manager on duty, "The banana is for decoration only and does not affect the taste of the ice cream, which is what you are paying for". We return the sorry sundaes and five minutes later, the staff returns with a dish of melted ice cream with two spoon-sized chunks of banana with the implication, "You will pay for this ice cream".
You can read the full story, "I want my Banana" on Tuyet's blog. G7 Trading and Service Co. Ltd, another arm of Trung Nguyen, will soon be unleashing G7 Marts (think 7-11) throughout Vietnam in the next several months. I hope they have better control over their network, and at the very least, carry bananas.
Posted by on April 24, 2006 11:44 AM | Permalink