News and Views

From my kids accomplishments, to my heretical perspective of the world

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February 28th, 2014 · 5 Comments

Today we flew from Danang in central Vietnam to Hanoi in the north. Hanoi was the capital of North Vietnam during the Vietnam War, and is now the capital of the whole country.

After landing we rode in a bus for a few hours to the town of Ha Long on Ha Long Bay. I think we will spend a night back in Hanoi before we fly back to Saigon on Monday.

The north seems less developed than the south. Roads are rougher and drivers are crazier. I liked the food in the south better too, though tonight’s dinner was pretty good.

Hanoi brings back memories of the Vietnam War. Though I was not in Vietnam during the war, of course, Hanoi was talked about in the press as representing the Communist north, the Viet Cong. It seems a little strange to have flown in as a tourist.

Anyone who has ever visited a tourist destination knows that Asians love to take pictures. The group I am with is no exception. Sometimes it seems like the only reason to visit a site is to take a picture of the whole group lined up facing the camera in front of some beautiful scene or historic monument, with several different cameras each time. I get a little frustrated because I’d rather walk around and experience the area first hand instead of memorializing it for later. On the other hand, I do enjoy having pictures after I get home, so I can’t say it’s all bad.

Personally I prefer to take candid pictures of people actually enjoying the scenery or interacting with each other. I often take pictures of people taking pictures, because that is really recording typical events. To me these pictures are more likely to bring back memories of the event than standing in two lines smiling into the camera.

Tomorrow we are going on a boat into Ha Long Bay to view the amazing sheer mountains that stick up out of the water.

Tags: Family Updates

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Richard // Feb 28, 2014 at 9:03 am

    I wonder why the photo thing? I’ve noticed it too.

    Interesting that the North is not as developed as the South. I wonder if it has to do with the jump start they got with the American influence and spending during the war?

  • 2 Don // Feb 28, 2014 at 11:15 am

    I think the Top Gear guys did a story where they ended up in Ha Long Bay. Looks like there are bars and restaurants all over the place that you can get to in boats.

  • 3 Richard // Mar 3, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    No recent posts. Did you stay at the Hanoi Hilton?

  • 4 Daryl // Mar 3, 2014 at 3:39 pm

    Been too busy and then exhausted when we finally get to the hotel. I’ll try to write an update today.

  • 5 Daryl // Mar 4, 2014 at 2:58 am

    We didn’t really see any floating restaurants or bars, though some of the tourist boats have bars and restaurants on them. But it’s a big bay and I’m sure there were many things we didn’t see. Probably a younger tour group would have had a whole different emphasis.

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