Captain Tran Chien sails out overnight to buy fresh catches from Vietnamese fishing boats in the Gulf of Tonkin and provide them with mainland specialties including families’ words. Photo credit: Tuoi Tre
Fishermen from the south central province of Binh Dinh Province (L) sell more than one ton of pompano to Chien, who sailed out from the central coast of Thua Thien-Hue Province. Around a hundred fishing boats would line up for the trade in the middle of the night, calling themselves the “East Sea wet market.”
Chien’s boat is loaded with ice before the voyage. He bought more than seven tons of fish that night and a further 7.7 tons from another boat early next morning, all stored in ice and sea water.
Mai Van Phuc, 16, (R), a chef on a fishing boat from Quang Binh Province, receives vegetables, meat and instant noodles from Chien’s boat.
One of Chien’s crew members throws votive paper cash into the sea praying for a smooth trade day.
Nguyen Han, another crew member, arranges vegetables and chicken before putting them into the boat’s freezers.
Chien’s crew members also help with fishing when needed.
Trading a new catch. Chien would rush to Tho Quang fish port in Da Nang early in the morning, selling back to dealers who then deliver the fish to wholesale markets in the area and Ho Chi Minh City.