Monday, February 27, 2012


We're back from an awesome 10 days in northern Vietnam. We had a blast, but I have to admit, it's nice to be "home" where the water is potable and my bed is not the top bunk inside a convulsing train car. Before we moved here, a number of people told me how much I would appreciate having Singapore as a home base here in SE Asia. It's true! Seriously, it pretty much always feels like summatime and the livin' is super easy. Thanks, Bradley.

But while easy livin' is good and all, sometimes you just want an adventure. And when you do, may I suggest Vietnam? It's easily one of the best places I've ever been.

If you go...

Wake up early and visit the parks in Hanoi. You will witness some seriously awesome dancing, intense badminton games and the cutest old ladies doing tai chi.

Hang out at a Bia Hoi where one dollar = one beer and the seating is a cluster of teeny plastic chairs spilling out into the street.

Join the locals for a game of đá cầu. It's like hacky sack except instead of kicking around some Rastafarian bean bag you use a little weighted shuttlecock. It has feathers! It's cute! And we were terrible at it.

Take the night train to Sapa! All the jiggling around on the bumpy ride there is worth it. The village ladies selling their goods are the sweetest, best-dressed and definitely the most relentless group of sales people I've ever met. And, duh, the views in Sapa are breathtaking.

Visit magical Halong Bay. The beauty is seriously unreal! There are around 2,000 gorgeous islets dotting the waters there. Islets. Isn't that a cute word? Really sounds like what it means: very small island.

And even if you do none of the above, just walking around Hanoi is a an adventure itself. Crossing the road will either make you feel like a badass or scare you into circling the block all day.

It was a great trip. And I have one million photos to prove it (and to sort through) and can't wait to share an edited selection this week!

P.S. you can click on the photos to make them bigger if you're feeling squinty.

(Photo of đá cầu via)

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