On the 18th we headed to Hanoi with the first of a very long series of buses, and after crossing the border (and buying provisions of cheap cigarettes) we really started to feel on holiday. Of Vietnam we will remember the colors, the atmosphere, and the smiles and the openness of the people.
In Hanoi at the hostel we met A, a friend of F. from Germany who would have traveled with us, and we went to explore a little the city. The hostel that we chose was FRIENDLY BACKPACKERS HOSTEL, a small but good hostel, with dorm rooms but family rooms as well, where breakfast was prepared by a woman in a small kitchen…it felt like home!
Hanoi is a nice city, and even if it’s pretty big the impression you have is always to walk in small streets completely full of people and little shops in every (literary every single) free corner.
The night was a lot of fun: we found a really nice restaurant where we were sitting on the floor,
and for some reason we went completely crazy, shouting like hell what we understood to be the word for “waiter”, “fu-fu” (no clue if it’s true) and teaching mostly bad words in Italian to the others. We really scared two guys sitting next to us, I think…their dinner was very fast.
The night went on before into the bar of the Hanoi Backpackers’Hostel (nice idea, always full of young people and party mood) where A. the night before had met some girls, and later our brains told us that would have been a cool idea to follow a random guy to a “secret party” in a dark street next to the river.
Actually it was fine, it just took ages to get into the club because we didn’t want to pay. We succeeded, indeed. Nothing particular to notice during the party…we had some drinks, met some people, lost A. Oh, Floh decided, on the way back to the hostel, to measure how deep a hole on the street was. Yeah, actually he fell into some work in progress.
In the morning of the 19th some of us had a walk around the lake, while others preferred to sleep, still kind of tired/drunk from the night. At the hostel F. and A. talked to a girl who had planned to meet a Vietnamese student to visit the city, and we decided to join them.
This was a cool project sponsored by the city called Hanoi Kids, and it’s a really nice idea: young students bring you around and talk a lot about everything, explaining stuff, showing cultural places, bars, restaurants (see post TIPS FOR TRIPS for more infos!).We annoyed our kid asking a lot of questions about how to pronounce letters and words in Vietnamese…don’t remember exactly why, but I remember that we were annoying! The afternoon held a surprise: we tried for the first time the Vietnamese coffee, and we all definitely fell in love with it. That would have been our favorite drink (except of beer) for the rest of the holiday.