Bucket List Number 1 – Vietnam Women’s Museum

The first bucket list item was visiting the Vietnam Women’s Museum. Happy to say i spent some hours there slowly going through about 4 floors of the current and historic roles of women in the history of Vietnam. Very interesting especially during the various bloody conflicts that Vietnam has had. Not only does the museum present the wartime but also family, marriage, how the historic roles of bride and groom and families once were. Its just reaffirmed my belief that Vietnam is an interesting, diverse, and fun country that even with its history is still young in many ways. It was difficult to take pictures in the museum so I did not try. I just enjoyed the presentation of pictures, art, and physical artifacts. I guess since I have done archeology and managed to work in a few historical museums, I know the work involved with a single exhibit. Its not just throwing the artifacts in the display.

This was done tastefully and with an eye toward the visual presentation. Lighting was subdued so it called attention to the artifacts and photographs. Walking through the museum is good for tourists because everything is written in Vietnamese, English, and French. Its easy to follow along and see what has happened in the history of Vietnam.

After the museum, I did the usual left, right, up, down the streets in order to get as lost as possible and get my walking in. I also wanted photographs to include in my project since I’m still doing things here which contribute to the walks and photography.

Here’s a few for you of what the city streets look like. I love the dynamic and fun nature of the streets and businesses.

Today I wanted to explore some side streets that looked bustling with small businesses because they always intrigue me. Its like the city spills over and the small tailor and beauty salons and leather goods find a neighborhood to thrive in. Of course, there’s always the coffee shop! This is coffee heaven I think.

Tomorrow is another bucket list day but I’ve been thinking about some ways to change things up. There is a hop on and hop off tour in Hanoi but the problem is I have seen all the places they go. I could just take the tour to the Mausoleum and then walk over to the museum I want to go to and then walk back and tack the bus back I guess. That’s more expensive than me talking to a friend at a coffee shop tomorrow and having her arrange a cab one direction for me. I would not mind walking back when I go.

I guess I am running out of days and I will need Wednesday to prepare my stuff, make sure, I have the clothing and electronics and camera gear accounted for, and do any last minute things to leave Hanoi. Thursday morning is an early morning. I get picked up at 6am and will get to the airport by 7am. Then I drop off the backpack at the baggage storage and get through customs and wait for my 930am flight to Hong Kong.

I also want to compile the photo albums from my journeys here in Hanoi and share the links out. So many photographs of Hanoi! Some good, some bad. Some pictures of my hand ;-). Since they are all in JPEG you get what you see.

I think tomorrow is another bucket list day for me and I’ll probably go back to see a Citadel and another museum which is the War Museum right next to the Citadel. I an walk there easily tomorrow. Either Sunday or Monday will do the Vietnamese Museum of Ethnography and plan on spending some hours there and then walking back.

I have to admit to thinking a lot about leaving Hanoi. Its been such a good thing for me staying here longer. I’ll miss the places I go for food and coffee and the people I’ve met. If you are coming to Hanoi, I strongly encourage you to get out of the old quarter as much as possible and see the city and the places beyond its borders. Its made all the difference for me in walking the city.

I also wanted to thank the folks that follow this blog and read my meandering posts herein. I’ve mentioned before that I don’t do this out of wanting to optimize my SEO (whatever that means) or monetize or have ads or create a cult of followers. I do this only because I feel I have to do this. The act of words on virtual paper is therapeutic to me and I feel especially since March when I left the states, the blog has turned to a new thing which is a daily recording of a single life spent walking with a camera and traveling in the slow meandering and vagabond zone.