Sunday, November 16, 2008

You know Vietnam is Communist when...

  1. There are huge statues encouraging work ethic, and also - a ginormous statue of Lenin in a really prominent park. There is also another park called Lenin Park - the biggest park in Hanoi.
  2. A Vietnamese friend says to me, "I really wanted to study politics, I find it really interesting, but I'm not a communist... so..." (he also says this with a mixture of secrecy and pride).
  3. Children are not allowed to draw free-hand incase they are not good at it, and therefore will feel bad. They should only do colouring in.
  4. When they do colouring in the co-teacher tells them what colour everything has to be - the birds should be yellow and red. When a boy colours his birds grey, she yells at him: "Yellow. Yellow and RED. Not Grey!" and taps the paper. Otherwise, she's really lovely and the children love her.
  5. Vietnam Airlines flies direct to: Paris (colonial connections) and Moscow... but not London.
  6. People say: "democracy isn't right for every situation" (I'm not necessarily saying this isn't true, but it's certainly something you hear in authoritarian places).
  7. I'm unsure about handing out the BBC Country Profile about Vietnam in class, because it contains some pretty harsh words about the government and media control.
  8. The 'art world' generally consists of highly impressive copies of Western art. NB: There is a really interesting subversion movement, but it's not widely known or seen.
  9. Ho Chi Minh (the dead body thereof) just got back from being further embalmed in Russia, and it's big local gossip.
  10. I'm unsure about posting this...


Elizabiscuit said...

ha! supercool post Lei Lei!

Anthony said...

So are you saying that this bird would be okay in Vietnam?? :)