Day Tour of Bai Dinh Pagoda and Trang An Open Space Preserve

One of the easier things to do is book a day tour here in Hanoi. I found one that I booked that would take me to the largest Buddhist Pagoda and an ecological zone. The Bai Dinh Buddhist Pagoda is the largest pagoda in Vietnam and one of the most ornate. I was able to walk through a lot of the pagoda today and enjoy both the beauty of the pagoda plus the natural space its in. As you walk the pagoda, you gently incline up steps down long hallways with beautiful artwork surrounding you. The pagoda is a popular day tour destination so there are a lot of people yet due to the size of the pagoda you feel somewhat alone at times. Photography is allowed and they do not seem to enforce some clothing standards like long pants thankfully because today was really warm!

Trang An was the next stop which is a beautiful ecological zone with emerald green river waters and wondrous limestone karsts much like Halong Bay. You ride in 5 passenger rowboats through grottos with low ceilings, wave at other boats and as I put my hand in the emerald green water, it was warm! I could not help but think it would have been truly nice to take a swim in it. All around you as you cruise, you see the limestone karsts poking up, beautiful blue skies, and lush vegetation. My other boat passengers were quiet the entire trip but other boats had friendly Vietnamese tourists which would yell “Hello” at me and wave.

After about two hours of cruising this beautiful ecological zone, we returned to the boat dock and then slowly headed back to our tour bus. Here are the pictures from today’s trip. I think that it was a great one day tour to take so if you have an opportunity and you are in Hanoi, give it a shot.

Just a word about day tours…

Now just a word about day tours. I booked my tour through a very nice travel agency at the Hanoi Old Centre Hotel in the old quarter. They were very responsive to my needs and answered all questions and ensured I was happy before with the proposed itinerary and after with follow-up emails to ensure that the trip went well. The tour guide we had spoke very good English and was very familiar with the history and geography of the areas we went. The tour cost included full transit including the Bus and boat rides and lunch. It does not include beer or drinks with lunch but for the cost of these I did not feel that it represented a large fee. I bought a larger water bottle for 20,000 VND and a beer after the boat ride for 15,000 VND.

I think other tours do things about the same as far as the services and support go but I felt that the staff at the Old Centre Hotel took pretty good care of me. When I took the Halong Bay tour, I felt more like a number and we had no ability to change the tour activities. Everything was rushed and mornings came early because they felt we had to have X number of activities. You may want to enquire with the tour operator on the flexibility to make changes as you want.

I am looking at a tour on the Red River next week which I would do right before leaving for Hue. I don’t really want another long bus ride type thing and this would be closer but still let me see the Red River past one quick look when I was out walking.

My advice FWIW for tours here is to check a few. Don’t just book Viator because I have found they do not cater to solo travelers at all and their itineraries are fixed. You can find local agencies that are reputable by simply searching and then sending the tour company email about what you would like.

I spent $55 today on the tour and I feel like I got plenty of value. Transport and activities were reasonable. Food was excellent! Our tour guide also ensured we knew the timings for things and how long it would take going there and returning to Hanoi. You can expect a longer day since by evening you will hit the evening Hanoi traffic around the old quarter.

If you get to Vietnam, hope you consider a tour for a day trip. I think they are very good ways of getting around to see things.

Warmer Day, Side Street Thoughts in Hanoi

Warmer day today and I felt a bit tired this morning from yesterday’s walk. I ended up sleeping in until almost 10am which was quite nice and then breakfast and a muffin at Starbucks. Around noon I decided to go for the day’s perambulations. I started around the Hoan Kiem Lake which is kinda sorta my base of operation but soon walked south turning down whatever street took my fancy or seemed to look interesting.

The area to the south of Hoan Kiem Lake is pretty interesting. There are skyscrapers and small shopping districts and open air food stands all coalesced into the same areas. Walking through those areas you see a variety and randomness truly astounding. I also don’t see any tourists for the most part when I walk south of the lake. Its only when I get closer to the touristy Lake areas do the numbers pick up.

There are also so many little side streets that I could never run out of places to see. Many of these have elegant little shops like boutique clothing, hair salons, and small toy stores. Cars do not go down these too often but scooters are forever present. Even if you think you finally have a street to yourself sans scooters, the reverie is soon busted by the sound of the horn behind you wanting you to move out of the way. The pedestrians down these little side streets tend to walk in the middle of the little road. Discussions are had as the they walk down past the other mostly present shop in Hanoi — the coffee shop. Coffee shops are interesting cultural and social things on the streets. Young people gather in the morning and sit outside often carrying on long conversations and I often get myriad “Hellos” as I go. These people have to be some of the friendliest. Then past the coffee shop you will see the other little shops. Many of these are elegant little affairs. I’ve decided to branch off with this and spend a day walking these and capturing the elements of as many side streets south of Hoan Kiem Lake that I can do. I will never get down all of them or find them but the walking and photography should give you an idea what’s its like in the little social and cultural areas between large streets. I like them a lot!

Tomorrow I take off for an all day tour so should have some things to share other than city pictures of Hanoi. I do another all day tour on Monday all day. I’m trying to get some things done before my end date of 14 June which is fast approaching. Next weekend I fly to Hue and then about a week later I leave.

Here’s some photos from the day’s adventures. Thanks for reading along.

Walking to the Beat in Hanoi – West Lake and New Places to See

Today was a longer walk that was really not intentional. I had set out to confirm an all day tour for Monday but the steps took over. Turn left, right. See new parts of Hanoi. I ended up farther up West Lake than before.

I ended up after about 16k steps at this brewpub I like going to after walking through beer street and not succumbing to stopping. I don’t really like beer street in Hanoi so I don’t stop there.

Today was a great day for walking and I think the photo album kinda shows that. Beautiful blue skies, puffy cloud things, and warm temperatures. Then at the end kind of beery out.

Now I am sitting in the room and thinking about two tours coming up that I’ve got for Friday and Monday. I’ll go see historic and archeological locations, beautiful country, and also enjoy some time away from Hanoi. I guess I am feeling that my time is starting to ebb away in Hanoi. I’ve been here since March 16th and with the day tours and my trip to Hue coming up, my days are shrinking.

I’ll be leaving for Hong Kong to get the visa run thing done and then ride the 30 hours on the train from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City. I have trips planned from there too. I’ve paid for flights here and there once I get there.

But now its today and here are some places I saw today. I really love this city. Its been really good to me and its reaffirmed the idea I had that I wanted to stay longer in places to get to know the locations, the people, the restaurants.

Hope you enjoy the photographs! I had a great time taking them today.

The Day in Hanoi and a hunt for time wonderful time

One of the many things I realized after retiring is that I would have time. Precious time to do a few things which I did not seem able to when working. I wanted to read more on my Kindle and I wanted to do more photography on my Fuji X series camera. Both of these things were retirement goals. As I mentioned, I also set a private goal and project to walk the city of Hanoi each day getting in 12k steps but also doing more photography in the city. A final goal had to be creating more content on my blog. I aspired to creating new blogposts on a daily basis which would cover my day’s activities. Perhaps be mile markers to the walking and the photography.

But I did not want these things to be like the projects of yore that I managed with milestones and tasks and due dates. I wanted the project to be a flexible self guided thing that would have me wanting to do it every day.

For the blogging, I realized that there are lots of people who look to blogs for different reasons than I do. There are as many different reasons to blog as there are bloggers. I believe though we all do it at a basic level for self-expression and sharing of information. Perhaps that information is painful and its a recording of the hells of life. Maybe its more professional life and your challenges met. The reason you create this weird content is important but the real thing is that you do it. The final part of the blogging thing for me was the community I would find. A group of bloggers that perhaps traveled, liked history and anthropology, a dabbling in technology.

So circling back around to the realization of having time. Time is exquisite. For years I watched as the 18 hour days at work went by and even on getting to my room, my work cell phone would be ringing. More issues. More frustrations. Delays or problems. I heard that for two multi-million dollar projects for two years. I dealt with it. But moving on meant no more of that. I had sweet time.

Today I walked and these thoughts went cycling through. I started sweating because its warm or perhaps warmer. Sometimes its also humid and the sweat creeps down the back and on the arms. That 1.5 liter of cold water from the convenience store is like sweet wine. I sat today under a railroad bridge and felt that seminal feeling of time.

Now I can share the day’s album with you. My attempt to taking time and carving it up a bit to do things I want. Consider when you write these things what you are really trying to do. Is it making money or creating optimized blogs or are you wanting to reach out to others. Share with them an idea or two. Try to find a commonality or uniqueness in your experiment of one. Give it some thought when you write a blogpost.

Personal Project – Record the Streets of Hanoi. A Report

Since I arrived in Hanoi on 16 March, I’ve been doing a personal project to capture the streets of Hanoi with my camera. There are no real rules to the play and work except for these:

  1. Walk at least 12000 steps each day
  2. Photograph whatever I happen to see with my Fuji X Series camera
  3. Purposefully do not record the locations

The idea of the project is to be a visual undertaking of sets of walks in a variety of directions. The streets of Hanoi are full of change, people, cars, scooters, and activity. Hanoi is a dynamic city of old quarter, French quarter, West Lake, Long Bien. It goes on and on.

I’ll be continuing the project until 14 June when I leave Hanoi. At that point I’ll publish a blogpost with all the photo albums linked here and perhaps people will get a sense of just what a great city, how random it is, the places that can be seen by simply walking. Hanoi is a relatively safe city as long as you do common sense things. People may say that the traffic seems crazy but the reality is that there is a flow to it and you have to be part of it. There is a dynamism of the people and the businesses. Stately old buildings and consular offices. Government buildings. The beautiful parks and monuments around the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. All of it can be walked to from most locations in the city.

I don’t know that will I continue to do the same project in Ho Chi Minh City but I will be walking with the camera each day recording things. I also publish separate photo albums for the cities and tours I do to separate them and more easily share with friends and family, twitter, Facebook, Google Plus. If you do use Google Plus I publish a collection of photos there that I update because its the easiest way I know to share photos.

I’ve taken over 1000 photos of Hanoi itself that I save off to Google Photos. Thank goodness its free! My photographs are done simply with no post processing, no RAW files, etc. I don’t have strong views on post processing of photos using Lightroom or Photoshop. If that’s your boat, float in it. I much prefer to use what Fuji gave me and make mistakes, try correcting them and immediately share the JPEG files. I may not be a photographer and I’m okay with that. What I am is a person that enjoys doing the act of it. The learning of it. But I really like the outcome and being to have a record of things.

The project recording the sights and sounds of Hanoi has been a lot of fun and its meant that my contributing goal of walking over 12k steps a day has been fully realized. I checked the pedometer app history and I have walked over 12k steps for 30 days in a row. That means I have also taken photographs with the FujiFilm X100F those same days.

Some good, some over exposed and under. Its all grist for the mill. I have been to some places numerous times and I still find new things, new views, new endeavors to record.

I would ask you all. What is it you expect to gain doing photography when you travel? Is it a record of the things you have seen or perhaps more of a personal reflection. Maybe you don’t share photographs at all. None is right or wrong except when you get involved at a level that it stops being fun and learning. Then it becomes some plodding duty and you feel that the effort is not worth the outcome.

I’ll be sharing the Hanoi albums in the next three weeks when I leave here.  I will really miss Hanoi. I’ve met people here that either I have typed my name into their Facebook account, met Vietnamese friends at restaurants and coffee shops and helping them practice English. Its all been good.

One final note with some sadness. My friend Mikka Luster has stopped maintaining his blog which was one of the few away from the wordpress.com community I liked to read. For a lot of reasons. His abilities at putting words next to each other, lovely photography, and the mix of introspection along with long hikes and reviews of tech will be missed. Thanks Mikka for the blog. I hope you can find a way to continue writing.

That’s it for now. Thanks for reading!

Travel by bus, train, air? – Sure you can in Asia

This is a companion piece to my blogpost about trip planning and booking hotel rooms in Vietnam or elsewhere. I wanted to focus on transportation within the countries other than airline flights. My goal was to fly as I needed but to try to rely on cheaper transport and you can move around a lot between countries here on bus, ferry, and train lines. The best way is to find the website applications which will make it easy to book the travel. Without further ado, I present a few of them for your consideration:

12go – This site is a master site for all kinds of transportation in Asia. You can book combination trips on it which include air, bus, train service. You can also just book a single transport and the site works very well on mobile devices. You get the tickets in an attachment and you can show just the attachment on your phone to activate the travel. I think of this site like a super site to book travel in Asia and to also research possible trips and transit. Very handy to look at a portfolio for a trip you may want to take. You can plan out the train trip from Chiang Mai to Singapore if you want and it will help explain what you need to do. Shorter trips are a piece of cake too.

Giant Ibis – Giant Ibis is a bus transport company that covers Vietnam and Cambodia pretty well. If you want to find bus service to go from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh Cambodia this is the place to look. The site is dead easy to use and you get nice tickets which you do not need to print. Simply show on your phone and off you go!

So far I’ve covered two sites which can make it easier to book travel on a variety of ways and also let you plan “what if” scenarios. Next up is a site which I have used for years looking at railroad journeys. It covers the world basically and you can look up distances, fares, travel times, issues or ways around them. I think of this as a comprehensive train resource for the world at large. Very useful.

If you have to fly and who says you may not want to given distances and time, consider airlines like Vietnam Airlines. I’ve found them to be very responsive and also issue tickets quickly. The website is easy to understand and you can get going quickly. As an example of an issue, I found that some air travel I booked had the first and middle names mixed up. The airlines support fixed this in one day and issued new tickets.

The real thing around asia is you can find multiple ways to book travel. The comprehensive multiple transport sites like 12go are very handy but sometimes you just want the bus ticket like I did from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh. Ten minutes later had the tickets in hand.

Hope this helps you if you are planning on moving around Asia and were hoping to find comprehensive sites to book travel. I also have a plan to report on some tour agencies I have been using coming up. I am not a big fan of tours but sometimes they serve a purpose. I will be taking two over the next few weeks because its easier and like most things in Hanoi its very reasonable in price and I get to see historic and cultural sites in a dedicated vehicle.

Travel Planning – a conceptual workflow and two resources to consider

I made my way back to Hanoi today. Vietnam Airlines is pretty nice and they make a really good attempt to leave and arrive on time. We did today. We left right at 1145am from Danang and got back at 1245 to Hanoi.

What I wanted to do is discuss two primary methods for reserving rooms either long stay or shorter. I use both and have found that sometimes one will offer a room while the other won’t so using both is no harm no foul. Here are the two and some notes to consider:

  1. Agoda. Agoda is a very nice travel application which lets you book hostels, hotels, and apartments as you need. The website works very well but the apps are nice too. I use the IOS app on my iPhone and it works very well to search, reserve, modify, or cancel reservations. The listings are really good for Asia and I have had really good luck for rooms in Japan, Vietnam, and Cambodia. The nice thing about the service I think is the booking section and how it will alert you if you have booked for the same period twice. It will also try to use your calendar to get your reservations. I have found that this does not work so well with google calendar at times. The filter and search capabilities are very nice with this service. I have not seen where you can save search criteria. This would be nice if you had the same dollar amount or room size or other particulars to apply across searches.
  2. Booking.com. This is the second one and I have really been using it a lot for travel lately. It lets you see a view of rooms and the logic flow on how the rooms are priced, what size they are, how many beds, etc is really nice. This service does not have a savable search criteria either. I have found that the information presented on booking.com is very accurate and I will be able to find a vast variety of rooms and also look at their locations. You can refine the search and apply it. Change the dates and the service flows with the changes very well.

I think personally, either of these services will let you be able to accurately book rooms and also compare between the two and both have gazillions of offerings and let you adjust the logic of when and where on the fly. I found both of these to be particularly relevant for my particular use which is wanting longer stay rooms primarily. I am able to book up to 30 nights on either but an email to the owner through the app will let you discuss your needs further.

Now for some apps I use but not for booking travel much any more. I do not use Expedia since I left the states and I only use TripAdvisor to look at attractions, things I may want to do, and to do reviews. I think doing reviews allows one to engage in community discussion and I’ve acted on reviews a few times to either book or change my bookings. On TripAdvisor all I really see are bookings using the two services above so what’s the real point when I can just go to the sites.

The final point are the mobile apps for either. I found both to be fully representative of the types of services you may want on the go. Sitting in an airport lounge, on a bus, in a busy coffee shop. You want to be able to see your bookings, adjust them, delete them. Having the websites side by side in chrome tabs on my MacBook is very handy.

The final thing is saving all those pesky emails that confirm your travel, air, bus, ferry timings. Do you do this? I have a workflow for this using Ulysses where I create sheets or notes that capture the details or copy and paste them but I also export them as PDF or image files and attach them to the sheet for the place I am going. This lets me have a working set of information I can quickly get to in Ulysses to review the timing without launching a website.

How do you do this? Do you have a central repository or workflow? Use Gmail labels or folders for things? I do both but the workflow has been a lifesaver a few times for me. I can quickly see the details of a trip and was able to find issues with overlapping rooms that I then fixed on either Agoda or booking.com.

Using sites like this to plan accommodation has been a lifesaver for me. I really like both of them and will compare and contrast their offerings and often change from one to the other if I see something good. I think if I traveled more frequently like shorter duration stays, I would come up with something else. I used to use TripIt to consolidate the travel but I cannot see why I should buy into another app when I can use Ulysses to consolidate the information. Ulysses really is my information manager and I am still creating workflows for ideas and concepts, stories, blogposts, and journal entries. I am drawing these out in Mindnode which lets me see the connection points better than flat notes. Then I can create the workflow like I did for the travel.

This all works pretty well for me but may not for you at all.

The last full day of the Hoi An Adventure

Today it seemed to get a lot warmer out so I ended up back at the room after still adventuring for hours and getting drenched in sweat. Now I’m in AC comfort and will go out and have a few beers before dinner tonight.

I spent 2 full days and one part of a day here in Hoi An and for me it was just long enough. Its an interesting historic view plus a lot of crafts and tailors and custom silks, coffees, spices. But the Hoi An cuisine is the most interesting to me. The food is spicy and has a decided seafood trend but as I walked along the night market, I saw just about every kind of food being sold on the street.Kabobs, ice cream, classic Banh Mi baguettes, small Pho shops.

Most people I think do not go out during the day times here in the summer and wait for sunset and the evenings when the lanterns light up and the temperatures cool off by degrees. Last night I went to the Red Gecko which was an amazing dinner and the owner and workers came to my table and told me to come back and have their BBQ. I don’t have the time so if there is one thing I could stay longer for its the food.

Tonight I’ll go to another place closer to the Hotel and then stop for beers again at this Irish Pub down the street. With tables out on the street and their 2 for 1 sale, its made for an evening of a few beers. Perhaps I have said this before, but Vietnamese people love their beer and food. In almost every discussion I’ve had, one of the common elements has been the food. Everyone in Hoi An, tourists and locals, loves to sit out in the evening with the food. It really reminds me of Singapore in some ways but the look and feel is completely different.

If I would build your trip itinerary to Hoi An, I would first find out if you wanted custom made clothing or leather goods. Next, would make sure you actually like to eat! Because if you don’t enjoy eating, Hoi an is probably not for you. Then there’s the old town itself. Do you like wandering a city and seeing the old and new kinda combined and sometimes with abandon? If you like these things you probably should visit. Now for the number of days. I only came for 4 days but 2 of them were not complete. So maybe you should you come for longer. Then there’s where to stay. So many places to consider. All different price ranges and comfort levels. I will say that I’m particularly taken with my Hotel. The Nova Villa is a really nice place with a great location and the rooms are just gorgeous. You get a free breakfast where they come back to ensure you got enough to eat. I had seconds of their delicious and yummy banana pancakes and two cups of coffee.

So you should visit Hoi An and eat and drink and perhaps shop. Don’t forget your camera. In evidence of this, here is today’s photographs of the walk. The entire Hoi An google photo album I’ll share when I get back. You should also bring comfy walking shoes and clothing that is good for warmer temperatures depending on when you come.

Anyways, tomorrow I travel back to Hanoi in the morning and I’ll back in the old quarter by 2pm or so. Probably go wander around Hoan Kiem Lake and eat tomorrow 🙂  Hope you enjoyed the little excursion and few days of blogging in Hoi An. Next trip in about 1.5 weeks is Hue. My time is winding down in Hanoi and I’ll be leaving around mid June and then relocating to Ho Chi Minh City for two months and a few trips there.

Life on the Road – The Vagabond Plan

The forever traveler is a strange thing to explain to people. I was in a restaurant in Hanoi with two tourists from Australia. They had 3 days in Hanoi and were wanting a “short list” of what to see. With only three days its difficult to suggest anything beyond the old quarter, Hoan Kiem Lake, maybe the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. Then there’s restaurants. Hanoi is just full of places to go eat and trying to suggest about 9 meals worth is difficult. I ended up picking places that I thought they would like.

But the real thing is the difference. I’m limited in time here in Hoi An but I don’t turn around and fly back home. Instead I just go back to my home in Hanoi for the next 3 weeks. I still have another shorter trip to Hue to do in about 1.5 weeks. I’ll go back to the airport and fly down to Hue and see historic sites, temples, and a bunch of other stuff. I may end up taking a day tour because it will let me see the majority of things and the cost is reasonable. When I get back will go to the Sinhtourist office and get the nice lady that helps me with directions and buses in Hanoi to help me with the Hue tour I want.

I guess after thinking about it and writing in my journal today, there is a profound difference in traveling when you know you are heading back in X weeks and when you are not. I have nowhere to go back to. Nothing left in the states that requires my attention. Children are adults for the most part. I have thought more than a few times that now its my time and turn. I went through the Hell years of divorce and debt and anger.

What is the travel like though when its not travel? Travel seems to have a start and finish. I equate the word to business travel. Where the business says you have to be at a place X for Y time. You go. There is no flexibility. I only really had flexibility at Celestix when I could take side trips but even then things are limited because I knew I had to be in Singapore and Chennai India. Things were going on and needed my attention. That is business travel in a nutshell. Things going on that need your attention.

So I explained to the two women that this is not travel. I purposefully picked countries in Asia with very flexible and cheap travel and with visas that were easy to get. My six month multiple entry tourist Visa for Vietnam only says that I must leave by 16 June. So off I go to Hong Kong on 14 June and get back on the 17th of June. Ready for my last three months or so. Its not travel though. Its most like vagabonding or the art of going here and there with no real responsibility or requirement.

Perhaps I finally gained it after those years of waiting. It still surprises me that it arrived and I caught myself at the bar in Hoi An this evening considering it. Now I sit as the eternal solo traveler that I am and am happy. I’ve finally found that answer to the questions that perplexed me all those years. The ones like could I or would I or should I? The answer is yes. Or I should say YES!

And its not hard to do. You don’t need a fortune to live a great life in Vietnam. Its different of course but you can find the services and support you need. Some of them just make more sense. Cell phone data service just makes more sense. Getting laundry done for $3.00 a week is another no brainer. Learning how to find the things I need in the IntiMex center is easy too.

I guess what I’m getting around to is that you too can be a hobo. Maybe you can find the ingredients that make sense for you and they are not the same for me.

That’s good! Because we all are different and the secret sauces we all enjoy require different attention. But perhaps the end result is that a person can travel the rest of their life. Pick the countries though. Do some research. Join an ex-part forum and use TripAdvisor. For lodging use Agoda and Booking.com. Or just go. That’s okay too. It all depends on what floats your boat. For me, I like a baseline of planning. I like having the room booked so I know I have a place to crash and a home base to plan from.

Go forth and make it happen according to your own life’s plan. I did.

Hoi An Day One

The first day in Hoi An is in the books. I took off from Hanoi International Airport this morning after a slight delay and the flight went for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Landing in Danang and meeting the driver was a piece of cake. After an hour of driving due to construction and detours I got to my hotel.  Let me say, the place I am staying is simply beautiful. I am only paying $64 US for 4 nights and I have this wonderful room.  The Nova Villa Hotel is close to the downtown and shopping and historic areas but you also get the river right there.

The restaurants in Hoi An are a bit more expensive so I hunted down a chicken and rice place that was cheaper. My first stop was for beers and I have to admit to getting a rather nice beer buzz on after drinking most of the day. Now I’m in my room and I have this wonderful feeling about life, retirement, beer. Beer is such a gentle drunk. It just guides me to what I want to think and blog about this evening.

I will say that Hoi An is one of the places to visit. Its one thing during the day but as soon as twilight and nighttime hit, the lanterns and lights go up. Its simply beautiful! If you like to eat and drink, I really think Vietnam is a great place! Here in Hoi An, the bars face the river with tables out much like I remember in Singapore. Food is all over. You can spend a lot of money on food or go hunting cheaper places. I found a chicken rice place that I only spent $3.72 for dinner.

The real thing though for this place is to wait. Wait until the evening time. Then the lanterns and lights go up and the people are out and its one of the singular places where you see the combination of river lights, people, city lights and lanterns. Its not like Shibuya or Ginza at all. You have to experience it.

Tomorrow I will go back out and do my usual wandering. Hoi An is a big clothing and tailor place but I don’t need any of that. What I needed was a place different and I think this is it.

Here’s the photos from today’s wandering.  Wha a great day!  It was a day turned to night and lights and beer and it was all good!