Hanoi Travel Blog› entry 1 of 11 › view all entries
A visit to Hanoi when the bicycle was king. Our country only this year normalized relations, so I'm one of the first Americans to visit after this relationship shift. The country is mired in poverty. I hate to admit it openly, but the failings of communism are more than evident in this country. Considering the awful toll the war placed on both us and vietnam, I think both would have been better served if Ho had been completely permitted to usurp the south in '65 and consequently fall on his own sword.
During one of my stops at a lake in town, I approach my rented bicyle and observe a man missing one of his legs below the knee extinguish his cigarette deliberately on my bike seat as I approach not 10 paces away.
Very emotional visiting the memorial marker that commemorates (propogandizes) the capture of fellow Arizonan John McCain after he was shot down over the city and landed unconsciously in Truc Bach Lake.
The feeling here is one of being in the countryside, even though this is the capital. The city is very pastoral and the primary transport is bicycle. I take a bicyle rickshaw taxi and have to close my eyes at each intersection because the driver doesn't even slow down as he merges through perpendicular traffic. I can't even tell what side of the road we're supposed to stick to, judging by the traffic here. I haven't seen even one traffic light, come to think of it. I imagine this place will be a blood-filled nightmare once motorized vehicles come onto the scene.