Five O’Clock Follies

The conference held a banquet yesterday evening in the Rex Hotel – another iconic Saigon location in District 1 (downtown) just a few blocks from my hotel. The banquet featured several courses of Vietnamese food and a performance of traditional music, dancing, and water puppetry. I had a very nice conversation with a young Chinese professor who grew up in France and has just accepted a new position at a University in Shanghai.

I titled this post “Five O’Clock Follies” because during the war, the US military PR office would hold daily briefings there on the status of the war. As the war dragged on, the press began to believe them less and less and came to refer to the briefings as the Five O’Clock Follies. The Rex hotel has given their rooftop bar that name, so I had to stop up there for a drink after the banquet.

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