Reading about the country side fascinated me then and it still fascinates me. I remember something about the Montagnards - the tribals that reside up in the country side - that they are hostile towards the Northern Vnamese government (or anybody that is there with the motive of establishing authority over them. They very much like their own independence and want to stay that way.) Otherwise they are a very friendly lot. I am not sure what the situation is today, but if others have taken trips up there, I am sure its quite possible and although dangerous, quite adventurous.
So now that I am bubbling with excitement, I am going to try to convince some Vietnamese friends of mine from school (OWU) to go there with me sometime. We'll have to come up with a time that works for all of us, but I'm ready to go as soon as next summer when school at Utah ends.