Phu What?

Trip Start Feb 10, 2014
Trip End Mar 08, 2014

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Flag of Vietnam  , Bình Thuận,
Tuesday, March 4, 2014


Phu Quoc

Even if you don't know Vietnamese you can’t help but notice that the way they speak in the south a very different than the north although they speak the same language .  In Hanoi they pronounce Phu Quoc as Fuh Kwok. In the south they say Fuhwock. Anyway I am on the island of Phu Quoc, The cold is long gone; here it is tropical and 30 degrees. I almost feel like I am at home. 

Phu Quoc is claimed by Cambodia as their island. When you check a map and view its location it is easy to understand why.   Cambodia maps call it Ko Tral, needless to say that the Vietnamese view this differently and to this end have built a substantially military base at the southern end of the island. The island is about 50 km long and tear shaped. The poor soil has ensured that this place is fairly pristine as most of the island is covered in very thick rain forest. Phu Quoc is not part of the Mekong delta as it is too far to the west (located west of the border of Vietnam and Cambodia in the Gulf of Thailand. The island’s income is derived from the fishing industry which is evident at the markets as you they seem to sell anything that can swim or crawl and comes from the sea. Various fish sauce factories scatter the island. Another source of income a substantial pearl industry and of course tourism

Today I rented a scooter and rode through the rain forest where the only industry seems to be the growing of pepper.  Pencil shape trees produce the green berries which are laid to dry in the sun and slowly turn into the product we know and grind up in our pepper mills. Not much to it really.

 I stopped to take some pictures. A man with a wrinkly face and as skinny as his hungry dog walked towards me and showed me a handful of peppercorns. They were still slightly green but once he rubbed his hands together instantly turned into a black colour when he blew away the green husks.

Most tourist head for the beaches, but as I live near the sea and we can go to the beach all year round it holds little interest for me; so I get an a motorcycle and ride the mountain tracks.
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Ted & Nga Wesselius on

Phu Quoc; we were there 2 years ago. We enjoyed the beach and the heat. Different from where Richard is dwelling around nowadays, we do NOT have that near our home ;-(

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