Thursday, April 23, 2009

Vietnam Part Deux

Day One (Continued):
Later in the evening I went to dinner with yet another newly discovered cousin (I won't even try to spell her name,) her very handsome husband, Adrian, and their daughter Estelle. They both spoke English and French very well, and I was excited to try out my pathetic French speaking skills. I felt like a fool talking to a native French speaker, but oh well.\\

Day Two:
It's Christmas day!!!!!! 

Damn! Crossing the streets here is like playing frogger on level 999. I suck at that game too. There's a million motorcyclists who won't give a second thought about running somebody over just for the sake of expediency.

I went to Christmas mass too, and of course it was in Vietnamese, so I couldn't understand a thing. the funniest thing i saw were tourists (haha! white people!) at mass. of course, they couldn't understand anything as well, so at random intervals during mass, little by little groups would just abandon the building. There was absolutely no air conditioning in that building so I was burning up by the end of that hour-long mass.

Day Three:

So, this morning I went on a walk through a park. The first thing I saw upon entering the park was a woman and her child sleeping on a piece of soggy cardboard. Wow. I started crying because it was so sad. my dad hit me on the head to stop it. ugh.

I went dress shopping upon learning that my cousin Lan's wedding was FIVE days long and that it would be rude to wear the same formal wear everyday. Since we planned for only one day of the wedding and we were able to attend only two, i had to buy another dress. lol. it was fun.

Then, in the afternoon, we went to the airport and flew north to Hanoi. From the airport we rode an hour on bus to hanoi. Once we were there, we walked around before we looked for a hotel. It's dirty in Hanoi, even more so in Saigon, and so we had a hard time finding a clean hotel. The one we found was right next to the street with a power line within easy reach (which equals death by electrocution.) It was so noisy and I couldn't sleep. Drivers up here honk their horns all the time and probably just for the hell of it. The streets are narrow and gross and lined with dog pee. yuck. 

However, the markets were very interesting. They're all very pell-mell and have sort of a distinctive feel to them. They don't have the feel of stores you would see in America. It's very...rustic? I can't describe it but I just love this atmosphere...besides the coldness here. 

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