02/07/2015 - 02/07/2015
18 hours later, we made it to Vietnam!!!
Hanoi is the capital city of Vietnam and to be honest, overall is kind of MEH in my opinion. The major reason being is that it is stressful as shit to walk anywhere. It is actually kind of unbelievable how many scooters drive in this city and there are absolutely no laws (at least being enforced) for driving. Think endless lane changes sans blinker, people crossing the road whenever they please (my first experience of this was a little kid running across the freeway) and nonstop honking. Taxis and buses even have a different kind of horn put into their automobiles so that with 1 push of the horn it honks automatically multiple times in a row. In the states, you honk because you have road rage. Here you honk because you are passing a car/scooter or you are approaching an intersection or you are turning a corner or really just whenever you feel like it. I feel lucky that I made it out of the city without getting my heels clipped by a car or scooter.
We stayed in the area called "The Old Quarter" (definitely do it) since its the backpacker area. Small streets, lots of places to buy crap, and confusing as hell to navigate. With that said, the night time was very fun since the daytime stores would close up and put out little tiny plastic chairs in the streets for people to drink beer and eat street food on. I kept seeing bags of brown circle foods that these old women were peeling and I was very intrigued so ending up buying an overpriced bag of... wait for it, water chestnuts! Wow so foreign... NOT. Felt like a serious noob.
One of the weirder things I forced Jon to do was attend a water puppets show which, as the name entails, was literally puppets on water to the tune of traditional Vietnamese music. We couldn't understand anything happening and after 1 minute of the 45 minute show, I instantly regretted choosing the middle, center row without an easy escape route.
We wandered around the city afterwards, witnessing a scooter crash, a photoshoot for 5 different brides and grooms in front of a generic looking mall (so weird) all while enjoying plenty of Pho and Bahn Mi's along the way.