Coming into Hanoi by taxi we thought: “Wow, this place is really busy”. Walking out onto the streets an hour later we changed that to: “Holy shit, this place is NUTS!” Not ten seconds go by that you don’t hear a horn honking from a motorbike or a car. There isn’t any aggression coupled with the honking like there usually is in the West. Here it seems to be more of a neutral warning along the lines of “Coming through”.

Streets and sidewalks are used indiscriminately by pedestrians, motos and bikes alike. (The cars seem to stick to the road, thank God.) Also on the sidewalks are bars, restaurants and shops so as you might imagine, it’s all a bit cramped. You have to be fearless when you’re walking, even more so when crossing the street. But don’t confuse that with speed. Slower is usually better. Fast movements means the motos and bikes can’t react in time and you’re likely going to crash. So if you want to cross a road, start inching your way across, one motorized vehicle at a time. (They’re coming from all directions at all times so you have to keep looking both ways until you’re on the other side of the road. None of that ‘Look right, look left, then cross’ shit. It’s more like ‘Look right, look left, then do it again, weave two steps across the road, repeat.’)

I’m going to try and make a video later of the mayhem because it’s hard to capture it in photographs but here are a few early attempts. I should also mention that we arrived in the middle of a major festival: 1000 years Hanoi. That might affect traffic as well but since everyone is very nonchalant about the crowds and the craziness, my guess is this is normal.

Calvin face!

Even in Caracas people would look at this and say: Hm, that might not be safe.

Millennial celebrations by the lake

More to come soon!

2 Responses to “HONK HONK!!”

  1. giulia says:

    love the picture gallery…..the picture of the kid that is taking a pic with all his surrounding in movement is fantastic!!!!
    oye love ur drink conor!!!! the heart shaped apple is really u!
    Ohh and send me please the LV vespa seat cover!!!! I would love to have one for my car seat! ;-P
    baci and nora feel better…..if u need anything let me know….I will send it from here!

  2. […] started our tour of south east Asia in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, where I spent my time searching for enough mosquito repellent to keep safe from malaria and […]

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