The park, water Puppets and the Circle Sportif
There is a park behind Reunification Palace, which used to be the Presidential Palace. In the Park is the Circle
Sportif> The Circle Sportif was a club for the elite of French Saigon Society. There were Tennis Courts, Lawn Bowling,
A restaurant and a Swimming Pool. This was a place for Officers during the American War. Now it is a public place.
In one section of the building is a cultural center where there were people singing. I looked in and a man came and
invited me in to see the performance. In another section of the building is the Golden Dragon Water Puppet Theater.
I went once with Hoa and once with Chau, Tram and Sister Agnes.
Walking through the park I found myself in the midst of acres of children.
Three beautiful little girls were playing Hide and seek. Each had a small branch in each hand. The one in black
pants sneaked up and waited for the one in Red pants to get to 10 and as she turned to say "ready or not here I come"
the one in black pants reached over her head and touched the tree.
A boy and a girl practicing dance moves in the park.
A cactus Garden in the park.
A group of scouts were in the park and when I approached them they all smiled and waived.
Copy of a Cham Temple in the park.
One of the beautiful landscaped areas in the park.
In an area of the former Circle Sportif is a cultural center where traditional music is being performed.
The stage of the Water Puppet Theater. Hoa was afraid I would not like the performance since it is in Vietnamese and
I do not understand the language. There are seventeen individual plays. One began with a boat with four men in it.
The first had a golden sword in his hand. Then a golden turtle came up out of the mist. When I was in Hanoi I went
to Hoan Kiem Lake and saw the Pagoda of the Golden Turtle. I was told that Le Loi was given a sword by the Gods to
win a battle. Later Le Loi was on Hoam Kiem Lake and a Golden Turtle came and took the sword back. Hoan Kiem
translates to Returned Sword. When I saw the sword and the turtle I said Le Loi and the returned sword. Hoa said
�yes�, but was surprised that I knew the story.
Tram at the Water Puppet Theater.
Sister Agnes and Chau.
There are 6 musician, singer, narrators. These three are on the Left of the stage.
These three are on the Right of the stage.
The girls in front of the Golden Dragon Theater with two over sized puppets.
At the end of the show the Puppeteers come out to a rousing applause.