Iceland’s President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson and his wife took a river tour in the southern province of Tien Giang last weekend and were very excited to see the breathtaking landscapes there.
The Icelandic leader and First Lady Dorrit Moussaieff said they had only seen such beautiful river scenes via newspapers before, as they took a trip to the province’s Thoi Son Islet on Saturday.
"To visualize the strengths and specific characteristics of the rivers and fruits of Tien Giang, a tour to Thoi Son Islet is the most accurate reflection," Tran Thanh Duc, vice chairman of Tien Giang, said as he politely greeted and followed the delegation.
In khaki pants and a striped shirt, the Icelandic president and his wife quickly got on the boat heading toward Thoi Son Islet.
In front of the Rach Mieu Bridge, Moussaieff borrowed the conical hat from the tour guide and posed for a photo at the prow with Iceland’s Honorary Consulate General Le Nu Thuy Duong, who is the general director of Long Thanh Golf Investment Trading Joint Stock Company.
Setting foot on Thoi Son Islet, the president and his wife, filled with excitement and joy, quickly walked into the fruit garden.
When the waiter brought out some typical tropical fruits such as mango, grapefruit, longan fruit, pineapple, banana, and especially the acerola fruits, the First Lady tasted them.
After enjoying the fruits and traditional music don ca tai tu, the president explored the garden nearby. The tall, healthy man loomed large in the dense trees of Phung Islet.
The First Lady also moved forward continuously to explore and exclaimed when she saw ripe yellow grapefruits on trees.
The cruise on a small boat through the waters of the Mekong River was truly a wonderful experience for the president and his wife.
While the president sat with his back to the direction of the boat, the First Lady stood straight up, outstretching her arms when the small boat traveled between two rows of water coconut. She only sat down when the boat went under the bridges over the canal.
The First Lady told her husband that the trip was happier than expected. She also kept saying, "Cam on, cam on" (thank you) in Vietnamese, an expression she had just learned.
When the delegation stopped at Thoi Son 1 restaurant to enjoy Vietnamese cuisine, the president said that he liked Vietnamese pancakes and seafood soup.
“Vietnamese dishes are tasty,” he said.
It was surprising that Moussaieff used chopsticks very well. She revealed with a smile that it was the result of eating at Vietnamese restaurants many times in London.
At the end of the trip, Moussaieff expressed her thanks and said that it had been wonderful.
President Grímsson began his four-day official visit to Vietnam at the invitation of Vietnamese State President Truong Tan Sang on Tuesday, with the trip meant to foster Vietnam and Iceland’s economic partnership.
The president and his wife visited the historic Cu Chi Tunnels in Ho Chi Minh City on Friday before embarking on the Tien Giang tour.