Hanoi has always intrigued me, drawn me, a visually beautiful city with a certain charm and character, it smiles at you through the cracks and exhibits style and elegance even amidst occasional chaos and degradation.
Hanoi is also a city being transformed, being modernized and in certain quarters, taking on the signs of wealth and progress that are universal to cities around the world today, some signs good and some signs bad.
Nestled in the mountain jungles of Tam Dao national park is Animal Asia’s bear sanctuary. Here you can see the most beautiful Moon bears which are native to Vietnam. Each bear has a sad story tell, years and years kept in a tiny cage unable to move around, fed on gruel, and kept for bear bile extraction. Some bears are caged as cubs and never released, many are kept caged for up to 30 years. Most farmed bears are starved and dehydrated, and suffer from multiple diseases. Fortunately the Vietnamese government has outlawed bear farming and slowly the authorities are negotiating their release to Animal Asia’s sanctuary,
Animals Asia will begin the mass evacuation of captive bears from Vietnam’s Quang Ninh province – on Tuesday 23rd June, with at least 14 bears to be freed from the illegal bile trade.
The 14 moon bears are presently spread out over 10 farms in the region, which is home to World Heritage site Halong Bay. Animals Asia’s expects the rescue to continue for four days, concluding on Friday 26th.
Animals Asia’s Vietnam Director Tuan Bendixsen said:
“We’ve been working since 2007 to end bear bile farming in Halong Bay – pushing year after year to educate tourists against the use of bear bile and working with the local authorities to build a relationship. That has intensified since late last year when we started pushing hard for a remit to rescue these long-suffering animals. We are relieved that the first large scale transfer of bears can now finally take place.
Read Darren Gall’s beautifully considered article on the perfect wine to pair with Asian, Vietnamese and Cambodian cuisine:
Asian Noir published on Urban Flavours
“A cleaved chunk of greasy pork, bobbing up and down, its final throws in a warm sea of noodles, spices, herbs and don’t ask what. A large porcelain bowl -chipped and cracked and stained with a drunken soy calligraphy, relics of a thousand dishes past…………… http://www.urban-flavours.com/2013/09/asian-noir