There’s still something special to me about a Saturday. Here in Hanoi it seems the city slumbers a bit more. The roosters perhaps tired of their ceaseless calls to action were subdued. Car horns blaring and telling motorbikes to GTF out of the way are less. The house is quiet. The other residents not seen. Here though people work as usual. They still leave for the days work as I leave for some food next door. The bun cha place is always busy but the ladies know me there so I get many smiles and welcomes in Vietnamese. They know what I want and they really only serve one thing. Fabulous bun cha. It’s a Hanoi thing really. Like pho is. Other places serve both but here is the home of both. Restaurants often only serve one thing here so ordering is pretty easy. You can point to a picture and the cook gets busy on the order. To pay is simple too. Everyone has calculators or smartphones with calculator apps. Many though speak English and can tell you the cost.
Today though I had bun cha and met a nice Vietnamese guy who asked how I liked the bun cha and where I lived and where I was from. He let me know my neighborhood place was famous. Imagine that! I always knew it was good. The entire meal with iced lemon tea was about $2.00.
Then it was to the usual place for coffee. The rich, strong wake up of Hanoi coffee and the forever beauty of west lake. The lake stretches far and wide and is a forever wonder to Vietnamese people. Always in photographs. Sunsets always the matter of the photography loving of all of us.
little trips added by one
One of my favorite of all places and where my spirit and soul feel most at peace is Da Nang. Situated by river and sea it offers so much for anyone visiting. Islands, wonderful parks , temples. Food. Oh yeah. The food. One can sit at the Han river and eat, drink, watch the sunset arrive and depart.
So I will go one more time. To my love. The place where my soul and spirit stirs. To say farewell for a time. Never goodbye. Vietnam holds my heart.
Fitting to end my year here as I have done since arriving. Little vagabonds here and there. Touching the flow and feeling the moments of flight and fancy. Travel is tough mostly. But not here. So I go.