A fragrant haze of incense drifts over brightly colored joss sticks deep in the interior of the Thien Hau Temple. Above the sand-filled bronze urns, coils of incense hang suspended from painted rafters.
The center of the roof is open to the sky; sunlight illuminates beautifully carved friezes decorating the interior brick walls.
Visitors wander through dreamy park-like settings to see monks at prayer, or to admire the fragrant blossoms of the apricot tree.
Then the reverie is shattered upon finding the only facility on the premises is a squat potty.
Thien Hau Temple, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam