Without an H

Photography from south-east Asia by Jon Sanwell

More from the Mekong

Water isn’t really my element – I can barely swim – but there’s no getting away from the stuff in the Mekong Delta.  I went on a few boat trips during my week there, but taking pictures from a moving boat isn’t easy, especially if you’re a big wuss who’s worried about falling in. The problem with water, a wise man once said, is that it’s wet and it moves around.

The area might be best known for its floating markets, but back on dry land there are plenty of street markets to visit.  Wandering around the market in Chau Doc early one morning, I thought to myself, “I could spend all day taking pictures here.”  So I did.

My trip coincided with the build-up to the Tet holiday (the Lunar new year, which is the most important holiday in the calendar for Vietnamese people).  With two weeks off work, I spent one week travelling through the delta, before taking a boat upriver from Chau Doc into Cambodia for another week.  Although I was out of Vietnam for the holiday itself, for weeks before the streets were full of symbols of Tet; red and gold decorations, yellow and orange flowers, and kumquat trees were everywhere.

When I first saw this picture, I thought that a pesky cyclist had ruined a good panning shot. When I saw it again on the big screen, I decided I quite liked it. I’ll just have to pretend that I had it all planned.

Rush hour in Chau Doc is a little quieter than what I’ve become used to in Saigon.

And to finish, a sunset.

(Coming soon: a post or two on Cambodia.)

13 Responses to “More from the Mekong”

  1. bananabatman

    Great photographic reminders of our own, rather rushed, tour of Vietnam in March 2010, which we enjoyed a lot. The problem with organised tours are that they hurry photographers too much, but at least we saw the country and learned something of its troubled history. Great post.

    • Jon Sanwell

      I first came to Vietnam on an organised tour – it was great, but it left me wnting to come back and see the country at my own pace. Thanks for all your comments. I’m glad you like the pictures, and I hope you get to visit here again some day.

  2. happypoppeye

    Some really great shots up there. …especially like the chicken feet and two “bicycle” shots.
    Nice work

  3. tvo314

    All your photos are very well shot and I always look forward to what you come up with. I live in HaNoi, so it’s interesting to see the contrast and similarities between the two cities/regions.

    • Jon Sanwell

      Thank you! I used to live in Hanoi and much as I like it here, I find myself missing life in the north.

  4. lrntn

    Another truly wonderful and lively set of images. ..the chicken feet one is particularly striking and fun

  5. cleighj

    AMAZING shots! I hope to get back into photography soon.

      • cleighj

        Oh wow, I’m really late replying to this. I’m not sure who the song is by but the song, “This Little Light of Mine” (…I’m gonna let it shine) inspired the name.

  6. t.on.air

    Wonderful photos. I like the colors. Keep up the good work and thanks for posting.


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