Friday 29 May 2020

It’s yet another Friday in Hanoi Vietnam. Almost the end of another month. Things here are open. You just cannot leave or enter at international borders. Life here is truly good. On this Friday I wander back to Kens Cafe for beers and sunset. The breeze sweeps down from West Lake warm and sultry. Warm day in Hanoi that I spent walking almost 6 miles turns to warm evening. Sky tints to pink.

Hanoi is one of those places you would want to isolate in. The city is warm and passionate. Food, coffee, and beer is some lifeblood here. Culture and history and wonderful people create stunning moments. As it turns out I have more Vietnamese friends than western and it’s the best thing ever. I don’t care to have expat friends or even acquaintances. There’s no upside.

The other night we all went out to eat Korean bbq. Four Vietnamese friends and me. We ate and ate and drank a little. We joked and laughed and gently teased each other. Then with hugs and warmth they sent me home in a grab car.

The days blend into days of walking and seeing and eating and nights spent sitting in roughly the same spot with cold Hanoi beers. Yep. This is retirement.

Next Monday I fly to Saigon to see my good friend lily. She owns a tour company down in Can Tho in the Mekong Delta. We will share dinner and beers and talk. The next day she must leave for home and I’ll stay for a few days. Then I fly back to Hanoi on Friday. Back to life spent with no particular direction or place to be. No tasks or timelines or things. Yes. This is retirement. Perhaps how it’s meant to be.

And it’s Friday at dusk and the beer calls and the sunset whispers.