Nam Thiên Nhất Trụ, or Một Cột (One Pillar), Pagoda in HCM City’s Thủ Đức District. — Photo giacngo.vn
Is nothing sacred?
Some people say “The most dangerous place is the safest”.
But what happened to a man, named N., who lives inside Nam Thiên Nhất Trụ, or Một Cột (One Pillar), Pagoda in HCM City’s Thủ Đức District, has proved that nowhere is safe.
Thinking no one would disrespect the Buddhist statues inside the pagoda, N. hid his personal gold inside some Phật Dược Sư (The Medicine Buddha) statues.
It wasn’t until last week that N. noticed one of the statues had a hole in its back. Of course, the gold inside was gone.
Checking on the other two statues gave him heart attacks as all the gold was gone, with holes in each statue.
In total, N. lost seven taels of gold worth more than VNĐ200 million (US$8,900).
The broken statues might be fixed soon but no Medicine Buddha can help heal N.’s pain. Maybe only the police can!
Air-con for trees
Hà Nội is experiencing an abnormally hot winter. Sunshine still blankets the city at noon with temperatures up to 27 degree Celsius. Many put this down to climate change.
Hanoians have complained about the heat, and so would peach blossom trees being grown for Tết (lunar New Year), if they could talk.
There are still nearly two months until Tết but Lê Hàm, a peach blossom grower in Hà Nội’s Nhật Tân area, has been worried about how to stop the flowers blooming early due to the hot weather. Hàm is famous for growing the valuable Thất Thốn peach, which have more petals than others.
To cope with the hot weather, Hàm tried to imitate winter by putting the trees indoors and using two air-conditioners to keep them cold. He said he has to track the temperature round the clock to make sure the trees get the right conditions.
During Tết, Hàm plans to rent his trees for VNĐ10-40 million (US$450-1,800) each, or even up to VNĐ100 million (about $4,500) for special trees.
Customers should pray that electricity prices don’t increase in the weeks ahead of Tết. Or else, they might have to rent the trees with higher prices.
Best tennis players get swimming prizes
All six gold medalists at the National Best Tennis Players Tournament on Saturday, including Việt Nam’s top tennis player Lý Hoàng Nam, received the wrong medals. Instead of a golden medallion engraved with something related to tennis, they were handed medals for swimming.
Luckily, the silver and bronze medalists received the correct prizes.
The organisers explained that the incident occurred because the medals were not checked carefully prior to the ceremony, resulting in the mistaken awards.
One of the gold medalists said he wasn’t too upset by the incident.
“But the problem is, I cannot swim,” he said.
Imagine one day Việt Nam may have a tennis tournament for swimmers and a swimming tournament for tennis players. That would make the twisted medals work. — VNS