For two years now Iíve wanted to travel to Vietnam, a country who has been attacked and colonialized by the western world, but still seems to have never lost their own culture and sense of integrity.

Maybe I should start by introducing myself? My name is Eleonor, I live in Sweden and Iím 22 years. I am a university student and Iím planing on majoring in Sociology. Right now though, I study History of Economics. Iíve moved around quite a bit ever since I left my hometown LuleŚ when I was 18; First I lived in Stockholm, followed by London for a short while and then I eventually landed back in the north of Sweden, in a town called UmeŚ. I like it a lot here, even though I can get sick of the small town-feeling some times. There is a lot to do even though itís not big since half of all the people who live in this town either attends or work at the university. So, how do I spend my time? School and studying takes up a lot of time of course, but apart from that I think, I read, I discuss politics, I abuse the Internet, I listen to music and I take photographs. Among other things of courseÖ :)

So what do I want to do in this far away-country? Mostly take the days as they comeÖ I have a big interest in how the process where a former communist country is taken over by (or opening up to, depending on how one sees this process) the western capitalistic world and see how that affect the people, their relationship to one another and what kind of cities the following urbanization creates and how the that effects the countryside.

The experiences of travelling in Vietnam I think could not only be told about in my photo diary, which you can read about below, but also inspire to an essay in Sociology about this process. I want to fly between Stockholm and Saigon but during my one or two months move around within the country by bus and train. Vietnam has during the last couple of years have had huge increase of tourists and I fear that if I not go soon this country will be "a new Thailand", that is, exploited of all the culture that originally was there.

Iíve been contributing to the web on and off since 1998 and left more or less embarrassing creations behind. You can find my present site at http://www.ohthatisnice.cjb.net/ (Itís mostly in Swedish though). There I have, among other things, a photo diary which is exactly what is it sounds like; a daily updated diary consisting of pictures instead of words (well, there are some words too).

I hope my ideas about this trip sounds interesting and that you will at least consider helping me to make it happen. My English is not perfect but I hope that you will understand my basic idea anyway.

Hope to hear from you soon,

Eleonor Lindbšck