The conclusion ceremony of the third HCMC Tourism Week was held in front of the HCMC Central Post Office in District 1 on December 10. This year’s HCMC Tourism Week attracted about 71,000 visitors; millions of views and followers on social and mass media; room occupancy reached 80% during the week-long event; and sales of businesses participating in the event increased significantly.
At the ceremony, the Vietnam Records Organization (VietKings) recognized the 3m x 22m doodle, which was formed from 22 drawings representing HCMC’s Thu Duc City and 21 districts, as Vietnam’s largest doodle featuring HCMC tourism, thanhnien.vn reported.
The doodle was drawn by 25 artists in 80 hours, featuring the traditions and tourism attractions of every locality in HCMC. The doodle was then painted by 2,500 people and the large, colorful doodle was displayed in front of the Central Post Office as part of the activities of the HCMC Tourism Week to advertise and promote the city’s tourism.
Unsold oranges: Saigonese to the rescue
In Vinh Long Province, the cradle of orchards, especially king oranges, farmers are on tenterhooks as their king oranges, in spite of a bumper harvest, are bought at extremely low prices by traders.
In Vinh Long, where there is the largest king orange cultivation area in the Mekong Delta region, king oranges are bought at just VND2,000-3,000 per kilogram (VND13,000-18,000 per kilogram formerly). At such prices, farmers incur a loss of VND60 million per 1,000 square meters.
Hundreds of groups and individuals from HCMC have gone to Vinh Long’s orchards to buy king oranges at higher prices for local farmers. The oranges are then transported to HCMC for sale to consumers without profits.
On December 5, Tran Thien Duong, a young resident in District 8, HCMC, rode his motorbike to Vinh Long to buy 10 tons of king oranges for a household in Vung Liem District at their expected price. Back to HCMC, he sold all the oranges at the buying price in four days. Duong then bought two tons of oranges for another household in Vung Liem and sold them out in HCMC.
On December 9, Nguyen Minh Cong, another HCMC dweller, joined a three-hour livestream by key opinion consumers (KOC) on social media. He could call for 200 people to buy oranges for farmers in Vinh Long, vnexpress.net reported.
Dream wedding party for disadvantaged couples
On December 7, a collective wedding party themed Vuon Tram Nam (literally means Century Garden) was held for five disabled couples, who have married for years but have never been able to have their own wedding party.
According to tuoitre.vn, this special wedding ceremony was held by a group of students of the Faculty of Journalism and Communication under the University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Vietnam National University, HCMC.
After 20 years living together in Phu Nhuan District, HCMC, and making a living by selling lottery tickets, it was the first time that Vo Nguyen Thi Thao, 48, and her husband, Lam Tan Canh, 54, had an actual wedding party. Similarly, Nguyen Vu Son, 36, and his wife, Nguyen Thi My Dung, 33, were happy to exchange wedding rings for the first time at that very wedding ceremony after 12 years of cohabitation.
It is noteworthy that at the collective wedding ceremony, the five couples watered trees instead of pouring champagne onto a champagne tower as usual. Each guest attending the party was given a small pack of seeds that symbolized wishes of happiness to the couples.
Three Vietnamese students bring salted coffee to Finland
Na Uy, a 17-year-old student from Danang City, moved to Finland in August this year to continue his studies at Sulkava High School in Sulkava City. To adapt to normal life quickly, Uy planned to start a salted coffee business with his two housemates, Phung Gia Phat from HCMC and Pham Minh Quan from Hanoi.
With a determination to bring this flavorful drink to Finland, he spent nearly a month practicing with several types of cream and milk to create an authentic taste of Vietnamese salted coffee, according to the VnExpress news site.
Their coffee shop is located opposite a supermarket near their house. It is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., starting from the end of October. Each cup of salted coffee is priced at 2 euros (VND53,000), milk coffee at 1.8 euros (VND47,000), and black coffee at 1.5 euros (VND39,000).
Within a short period, the coffee shop attracted many customers. Their customers, mainly middle-aged and elderly, were surprised by the sweet and rich flavor of the salted coffee. Uy and his friends’ startup project also received support from their school’s principal and the authority of Sulkava.
“I might add Vietnamese bread with grilled pork to my menu. With this coffee shop, my journey in Finland becomes even more meaningful as I can introduce Vietnamese cuisine to this country,” Uy said.