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Mornings in Hanoi

Kinda slow and fast at the same time. I lose track of the days. Somehow today was some day not in our regular rotation. Like a Tuefrimon-day. Non existent and time never applies. I can sit on the coffee shop WiFi and puzzle over whatever there is. Then the wonderful Vietnamese ca phe Nau arrives. This is a variant of sua da which seems more blended and often the barista vigorously shakes the coffee and condensed milk together. This is how you find coffee in Saigon a lot. In Hanoi you can get the sua da but Hanoi coffee with milk is different. Most places it’s up to you to stir the milk and coffee. Often you will get tea or water and the waitress happily provides the WiFi key.

I’ve noticed some places like pho restaurants are the type where I go in and eat and no sitting around after. Coffee houses here are made for the sitting around part. Often people will bring a banh mi or pastry from a local bakery to have with the coffee.

In normal times people spill out to the sidewalk and socializing, eating and drinking often blocks the sidewalks. Along West Lake are numerous little cafes and eateries where one sits at the lake. A favored spot for sunsets. For cheap beer. For socializing. During normal times. Now sadly those places are not open for sitting along the lake.

So mornings here in gregarious and social Hanoi are spent at favored spots or new places. Often pho or bun cha is consumed or perhaps the most universal and changing banh mi. One with eggs and chili and sausage from the nice lady by where I live. Costs $1.25. Then a coffee at the lake and do nothing.

But…

Enjoy the mornings in Hanoi.

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