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A Day in the Ville5957 Reads  Printer-friendly page

VietnamI was lucky enough to be stationed at a field hospital in Qui Nhon for a couple of months. QN was known by many to be an unofficial in-country R&R center. The town was pretty large, had quite a few GI's, and set right on the beach. Inland was a rather large mountain range that was the home of one of the many ROK divisions that were in-country at that time. In other words, a pretty nice place to be.
Like most places the hosp was short staffed so a normal work day was 12 & 12. On the occasion that we could get a chance to go off and pay a trip into the ville was always high on a person's wish list.

It wasn't far from the hosp gate to the center of the "entertainment district". But every available foot of sidewalk space was being used as an offering place for one thing or another. It was a giant garage sale for the GI's. Lighters, hats, trinkets, brass work, clothing, genuine ancient VN artifacts, real gold, Coca Cola, Miller's, US cigarettes, any and all of these were available on the street. A quick walk down any side street or alley took you to an entirely different form of merchandise.

At that time (68) there was very little serious drug use in that area. Lots of people smoking dope, but very little of anything harder. Though I am sure that it could have been attained if asked for.

The buildings were home to the finer stores, featuring expensive junk for the GI's. Just pure whore houses. And the bars, which were often a combination of all three.

We all had our favorite bars and quite often our favorite girls. Upon entering one of these all of your senses were immediately assailed. The smell of smoke, beer, food, and urine made for a combination that was unique. Next your sight was assaulted, you had come from a sun-lit sidewalk into a dark smokey room full of moving shapes. All of the bars had wonderful sound systems, not always par to the Go-Go's of San Francisco but really loud none the less.

The next assault that the GI would experience was directed at his gonads and wallet, not always in that order, but always in that relation. "Hi GI, where you from?" seemed to be as good an opening line as any. This line from the bar-girl/hostess/companion/etc was always soon to be followed by that well loved mantra; "hey GI, you buy me tea?" Now was when the game was truely underway. Her job was to get you to spend your money on shot-glasses of tea and your job was to get to the next item of business without spending too much on tea. Always a fun struggle. It is awfully hard to say no to anything when there is a real live girl pressing real live girl parts against your rapidly exciting boy parts.

The thing to remember here is that the price of the boy/girl play is basically fixed, I think it was about $5.00, no matter how much tea you did or didn't buy. Good manners said that you should buy at least one drink for the girl, actually you were supporting the bar through that purchase. After all someone had to pay for the sound system. Many of the cooler guys refused to buy tea but would buy the girl whiskey..no more comment needed.

After the rent was paid, and you had had a few more warm beers to stiffen your "resolve" it was time to negotiate the main event. Everyone knew what the absolute bottom price was but the girls all seemed to work on the theory that it never hurt to ask for more, demand more, yell for more, or just generally attempt to influence the price. Like I said $5 to $10 was the range.

The actual event (details of which are best posted onto alt.sex.something) usually tended to be pretty quick and to the point. After all, her job performance was based on quantity not quality. A trip behind or curtain or up a stair was quickly followed by a very non-romantic encounter. Complete with "sincere" noises expounding on what a wonderful #1 boy friend you would make if only you would agree to pay her rent etc, etc.

After this it was usually best to hit the trail back to where you had come from. They had gotten you to spend some money, you had most probably enjoyed yourself, and anything that would follow next was usually not real fun. Fights with the bar-girls or other patrons was a common next occurance. So you would stroll on back to the unit, telling lies to your buddies about what you did/what she did, all along the way. And if you were really lucky you would get back to find that all of the possessions you took with you (wallet, watch, ring, lighter, etc) you still had with you upon your return.

As you approached the gate of the compound your mind returned to the fact that you were here to be a participant in a war. Though your trip to the ville was a wonderful escape, your real world was the wounded on the other side of those gates. Welcome back to reality, did you enjoy the trip to the un-real world? The strongest feeling that I remember from these outings were those that I felt upon return to the unit. The wounded would still come in, and I still had a long time to be incountry. The day had been fun, but Lord was I depressed. But, we all know that I couldn't wait for the chance to take a trip into the ville.
Note: By Jim Calbreath


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