Well non techno me has pushed a wrong button somewhere – I could not get the pics for this to load – so I am going to publish it anyway, and the pics will be on Facebook. Sorry about that – but I should be able to get some help before the next post. G So here is how Hanoi will Always Be to Me:
* Being brave enough to cross the street. It is death defying. You take that first step out in front of 50 – 100 oncoming scooters, cars, buses etc. Once you start, you never stop, you never change your pace, even when the urge to run, or stop, is overpowering. you never look in the direction of the oncoming traffic and they go around you – you hope!
* Scooters, scooters, scooters – at least half of them tooting their horn at any given time. They ride on the sidewalks and they go the wrong way down one way streets.
* Vietnames women with conical straw hats, a bamboo pole over their shoulder, and big baskets bouncing along on either end, loaded with anything and everything.
* Street food. A woman carries her entire cafe with her, stops on the street – cooks, and has a stool for her customer to sit on.
* Plastic stools less than a foot tall. They are everywhere -and that is seating everywhere. I will never be able to master getting up or down from one.
* Rickshaw drivers yelling “Madam, on hour”…….
* Vietnamese coffee – thick, black served with sweet thick condensed milk, in a glass.
* Bicycles loaded with huge amounts of anything that needs moved anywhere.
* Everything happens on the street – haircuts, getting your hair dyed, pedicures, shopping for meat and vegetables, men getting a shave, portable stores and cafes.
This is a city where you could spend an entire day standing on any street corner, and be entertained all day. There is always something to see that is totally amazing. Aside from the cold crappy weather, I have really enjoyed my time in Hanoi.