hanoi, vietnam :
my brother and i landed in hanoi, vietnam after 28
hours of uncomfortable travel with next to no sleep and a whole day ahead of
us. we were definitely tired but so excited that we were in freaking NAM so we
got out on the town right away. that day we walked around the lake (our favorite part of hanoi) in
the old quarter, went to the hoalo prison, then to the women's museum. we wrapped up the
day with the water puppet show, which probably would have been way cooler and
more appreciated if we weren't so dang tired.
if i’ve ever had culture shock, it was
in hanoi. hanoi is very hectic, dirty, loud, crowded, confusing, colorful, and fast paced. all the food’s made in front
of you and served on the street. the fruit is unbelievable! i would seriously consider moving to asia if it meant access to delicious, ripe fruit every morning. david and i found this little fruit
shack where we got smoothies and fresh fruit all the time. we’ve been in asia for about a week and a half and have had a mango smoothie every. single. day. they're that good. lychee's our on-the-go favorite. in the city the streets are stacked with motorcycles and the roads are
packed with them. there’s no such thing as a cross walk, you just walk
into traffic and the cars and scooters dodge you. it’s great. the walkways aren't ever
clear and there're always groups of people squatting or sitting on little
plastic stools eating their food.
the next day we visited
the temple of literature, what used to be a university, the first and oldest in
all of vietnam actually. and after wandering about for a while we went to the museum of fine arts, where i almost accidentally knocked down a painting, then out to the museum of ethnology. we spent ages reading all the
signs and studying the way of life and faces of all the different tribes and didn't feel like we got anywhere. later that night after dinner we got caught in
a DOWNPOUR. it was amazing. i’ve never seen that much water in the
streets. and people just kept scootering along like it was nothing.
being in asia is a remarkable adventure. i feel like i'm dreaming all the time. i'll keep updating and posting more pictures as i explore this corner of the world. if ever you're in hanoi for a day, go to the outdoor exhibits at the museum of ethnology and spend some time walking by the lake in the old quarter. and get your mango on.