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  • Day163

    Good morning (or is it night?) Vietnam

    February 16, 2017 in Vietnam ⋅ ⛅ 73 °F

    After travelling 14,900 miles, two journeys >24 hours and visiting 7 international airports in just a few days since San Jose, we are now in Hanoi, Vietnam. We arrived on Wednesday evening and have spent a couple of days exploring the city and trying to recover from our jet lag. The jet lag is proving more difficult than Costa Rica - our own fault for arranging a schedule that traversed 13 hours of time zones in 5 days I suppose (UK is 6hr ahead of Costa Rica & Vietnam is 7hr ahead of UK)....

    On our first day in Hanoi (after having woken up at 2.30am) we wandered around the old quarter, exploring the streets and learning how to cross the road. I have never seen so many mopeds in my life (it makes Italy look positively tame!) and you need some nerve to cross the road, especially with a 4-year-old in tow... Every street has a theme, with shops mostly selling the same type of thing - so far we've seen silk street, toy st, moped repair st, jewellery st, jade st, light st, hardware st and noodle st, amongst others. Our hotel is near Hoan Kiem Lake, so we walked along the lake shore and also visited Ngoc Son Temple, which is on an island in the lake and you get to it by walking across a picturesque red bridge. The temple gardens were small but a lovely tranquil haven from the bustle of the city, with beautiful bonsai trees. We sat by the lake eating a snack after the temple, when a group of local secondary school children asked to interview us about New Year for a school project (see picture). They found it hilarious that we don't wear any special clothes or eat any special food at new year! It was interesting talking to them. In the afternoon we went to see the water puppet show, thinking it would be a great thing to do with Solana. Unfortunately she fell asleep in the sling on the way there and when we woke her up to see the puppet show, she was scared and didn't like it! A shame because it was actually quite good and I ended up missing most of it... Solana fell asleep again later in the afternoon; we tried to wake her for dinner but she was so tired she was unrousable, so we ended up taking her out asleep - she slept through dinner and the walk back!
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