Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Vietnam

Currently, I am sitting on an uncomfortable rattan chair in a semi-cold cafe that reeks of cigarette smoke. I'm running on three hours of sleep and trying my best not to get bitten by mosquitos. My moods are vacillating from cranky to conciliatory to affectionate to just downright annoyed.

 As my boyfriend says, I have a tendency to focus on the negatives, which is why I decided to start this post out like this so I can get that out of the way.

This semi-chilly cafe is actually in Danang airport, in Vietnam. My boyfriend and I are on our fifth day of vacation and it has been really wonderful so far. We have spent about three days in Hanoi, and also did a day trip to Halong Bay. Felt like I was in Indochine, that Old Catherine Deneuve movie.

It's just such a relief to be out of Phnom Penh. There are many things that Hanoi has in common with the Penh, but the things that differ are just... better. Neighborhoods seem more like a state of mind versus just a series of buildings thrown haphazardly together; the architecture is gloriously mismatched in a way that feels genuine - instead of the manufactured vibe that some of the refurbished French colonial buildings can have in PP - from the heavy French influence; Vietnamese people don't give a shit about what tourists do here. No attitude is given, but there is a certain feeling of "You can spend your money but we don't really need ya, so we're gonna treat you like a normal person."

I'll be returning to PP on the 14, and until then, I'll be trying my damnedest to think as little about returning to work as possible.

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