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Hanoi-Rainy Day and meeting my Vietnamese Namesake

Today, I set out to go to the museum. But it was raining. I didn't feel like walking all of the way. So I sat under a ledge and watched the traffic go by for a while. It was an endless parade of motorbike after motorbike, some with big loads, going in every direction. I really enjoy watching that. i even took a short nap near the ledge, as I usually do.


I woke up towards the afternoon, and took a walk to the other side of the lake to the museum. The museum was closed for lunch (many places are open in the morning and once again in the afternoon. I was there early-but there was a Hilton hotel next door. I went in there and soaked up the AC for a while-I figured this was the real Hanoi Hilton. It didn't use the name Hanoi Hilton-it was the Opera Hilton-or something like that. I walked around the area, and then looked inside a Toyota dealer, where all the salespeople seemed to be sleeping.

I Went to the museum and spent about an hour there. The museum was pretty empty, and wasn't really interesting. A lot of old ceramics-not much in the way of description of the history. I did learn that parts of Vietnam used to be predominantly Hindu-so Hindu in addition to Buddhist. There we're so scale models, but otherwise the museum wasn't really worth it.
I then went to another Buddhist temple on the lake to look around.

After the museum, I took a walk around the lake. I wanted to find the coffee place that Bob took us to the other day on the free walking tour from the hostel. I thought I remembered the block it was on, and how it was on the 2nd floor of a building, up a small, creepy staircase. I was sure I found the building, I asked a lady at the restaurant downstairs if coffee was upstairs. She said yes. So I went up a small creepy staircase-it did look familiar. And I found a coffee house. But it wasn't the same one as the other day. It was a different 2nd floor coffee house in a different building. And the prices we're higher. (It was roughly like $2.00 for a cup of egg coffee vs $1.50 in the place before). IT was good though.


I left and I was hungry. I already ate several times before today, (breakfast as the hostel, some bean thing before, bread, and chicken pho for lunch). I found a woman selling a lot of shelled peanuts for around $1.00-so I bought the bag and sat on a bench overlooking the lake. As I sat there, a Vietnamese guy in his 20's started talking to me. His name is David Pham-so another David P. He is in his senior year studying finance at college in Hanoi, and lives in a two 1 1/2 south. He isn't sure about his English-but it is actually very good. He asked if I watch the news while away. I said I look at CNN. He said "Fake News. Donald Trump doesn't like that". He mentioned that although I was American, I wasn't fat. He said he likes white girls. We had a nice conversation.


Eventually, I had to make it back to the hostel. I am doing a trip to Sapa, where a bus picks me up at 9:00 pm (it is roughly a 7 hour drive and I sleep on the bus-and then go on a homestay. There is supposed to be beautiful scenery, and I will meet some Vietnamese Minorities. So I wanted to pack up some stuff before getting going.

Posted by DavidPearlman 06:50 Archived in Vietnam

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