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New Year Resolution for 2008: Swim faster, Run longer, maybe return to cycling.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Hai Phong

If there are 3 words to describe Vietnam, it's gonna be:
Padi, Horny, Faith

I'm not sure if it applies to entire Vietnam, but the 2.5 hour road trip from Hanoi to Hai Phong clearly describes these 3 words.

Padi: It's fields and fields of padi for slightly over half the journey. There is water everwhere, and the land is almost entirely flat. One thing unique about the padi fields are the numerous graves that dot each plot of padi field. Perhaps remnants of past wars or just family burial grounds, the graves and rice fields seem to be one with each other. Choose any given padi field, and you're certain to find a few graves amidst the fertile soil.

Horny: That's the way it is. Every vehicle on the road is horning each other. They horn when they warn you. They horn when they intend to pass. They horn when they are passing. They horn everytime! It's so melodious! And yes, it's so noisy that I can't fall asleep on the car journey to Hai Phong!

Faith: If you need to cross the road, just cross. Just walk across the thoroughfare. By strange Vietnamese miracles, you will get across safe and sound (full of horning sounds). Indeed, the vehicles travel at optimum slow (not crawling speed) and they 'graciously' avoid you. But whatever it is, don't try this in your own home!

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