Mom - i wanna go on that boat, she says as we arrive on Cham Island. The thung chai, or �basket boat�, traces its history back to the French colonial era. As the story goes, the French arrived in Vietnam and began levying taxes left, right and centre � including a tax on the ownership of boats. Most of the poor Vietnamese fishermen who depended on boats for their livelihood could not afford to pay the taxes, so they invented a new type of boat: the thung chai.
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