Wednesday, October 22

Concerns About Organization from Vietnam

Dr. Vladimir Naroditsky remained at home to tend to business while his wife Lena and son Danya traveled to Vietnam. Here are observations from several emails that Vladimir asked me to share with the public so that word gets out.
  • The weather conditions are almost unbearable, especially since the air conditioning does not work inside the playing halls. Playing conditions are inhumane!
  • There were no board numbers for round 1. Some players moved several times, apparently without explanation due to the language barrier.
  • ID tags for some players were mixed up, creating confusion. Danya's round 1 opponent showed up late and appeared to be significantly older than 14.
  • Internet does not work inside the hotel as promised, although some nearby hot spots have limited wireless access.
  • On the bright side, the local people are very friendly and genuinely try to help.
How is this different from previous years? Certainly any large tournament with participants representing many different countries will have difficulties related to the language barrier and vastly different cultural expectations. Often the local organizers and hotel staff are ill-prepared for the crush of people from around the world. Nonetheless, most reports from the 2007 World Youth in Antalya, Turkey were positive with only minor inconveniences. On the other hand, the 2005 World Youth in Belfort, France was an unmitigated disaster! You may contrast Antalya and Belfort by reading the threads on the CalChess forums.

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