This is a little travel digest. It takes me from Hanoi to my first place. Hope you enjoy...
Today I fly! But I fly later. My flight got delayed a few hours so I have more time here in Hanoi this morning. Since I have no real goals there, it’s easy to just accept the delay. My friend L and I will do dinners after tonight I guess. She wants hotpot and Japanese food there.
Now I will head to the airport around 130pm so I can get through the check in process and also security. The domestic travel in Vietnam is really moving along. Airports are really busy it seems so I just allow myself coffee time at the airport and sufficient time for people watching.
First though is breakfast and some of my morning addiction. Vietnamese iced coffee. Perhaps a bakery or maybe a small cafe I know. I’ll post this to the blog this evening when I reach the Quy Nhon part. I’m gone a week so will record two more places yet to come. Saigon is up after Quy Nhon and then Can Tho. Then a week from today back here. So now let’s kick breakfast in the butt. Onward!
to the airport and before
So before airport was time with my friend Paul. He surprised me and we met at a local cafe we both frequent. We talk a lot about Vietnam and the US and families. After a few hours of coffee and talk about his new house here I got a grab car to the airport. The ride takes about 40 minutes. Costs about $8. The domestic airlines are busy and flying around Vietnam is pretty easy. Also cheap. To clear security, a face mask must be worn and temperatures are taken. Clearing baggage control is like everywhere. Passport or ID and flight ticket. Baggage screened and then through. Now I’m at a cafe after a bowl of pho and have an hour until I go. The flight takes over an hour so will pick this back up after reaching the hotel and the many hugs and teasing given and received from my L.
in Quy Nhon
This is the final chapter of the first day. I reached the destination. At the hotel where my L works. Quy Nhon is beautiful and very touristy where I am staying. Lots of restaurants and coffee shops and beer bars. I think I’ve realized its the going for me. I just need to be gently moving from a place to another place. Tomorrow I’ll start moving within the new place and see the things which are there for me to find with only two days of wandering. Pictures to come of my purposeless wandering. Tonight across the street for some beer and food.
I wanted to just write today here and see where the words would take me. It’s made me glad to be able to wander around in Vietnam by bus, train, or plane. Now its food and beer time and then back to the room. The room I have is beautiful and i always feel like spoiling myself in the hotels I find to stay in. I really came here to see L but also see a city I have not been to. Investigations commence after breakfast on the rooftop tomorrow.
Tomorrow I leave for a week. Gonna be fun. The first place is a costal and beach city I’ve not been to previously. Will spend three days there. My friend L lives and works there so will spend time with her. We will do dinners mostly and just talk. She speaks very good English so it’s pretty easy.
Next up is Saigon. It’s the largest city in Vietnam and there are lots of coffee shops and restaurants around the city. Shopping is pretty good too. I’m staying close to the Ben Thanh Market which has basically everything from food to electronics. I’m staying only one night in Saigon.
Then I catch the bus this Friday to the Mekong Delta and the city of Can Tho. I’ll spend three days there seeing my friend L and T. They run a tourism business there to explore the delta and various parts of Vietnam. We will go eat dinner at this bbq place they want to try and hopefully one night with beers at sunset at this restaurant we ate and drank at before.
I’ll fly back the following Monday to Hanoi and that’s the travel here in Vietnam so far. I may do one more short trip in November around the US Thanksgiving holiday to an island resort here. Have not decided if I do that.
January marks the end of my stay here pretty much. I don’t know where next is. Could be Thailand or Singapore or Mexico or just about anywhere besides the US. I’ll make that part up when I come to it.
Now it’s pancakes breakfast at Toms Cafe and some errands to get ready to leave. I’ll write up the places. Especially Quy Nhon since I have not been before. Definitely the photographs with the iPhone 11 Pro toy.
I’ve been using the iOS WriteFreely app in beta now and it’s pretty good! The editor is minimal which is about what you would expect given write.as itself. When I moved from Wordpress last year the interface and how published posts looked wowed me. My friend Mikka had been running one of his blogs here. Now he’s gone to other pastures. Perhaps Wordpress or something else. I miss the stories and pictures a lot from when he would do that. Maique on micro.blog does a similar thing.
I had settled on leaving Wordpress a year ago but wanted something where writing was front and center. The art and act of creation. The goal no matter with this blog was to document my passing of time leaving the US forever and living a wanderers life in Asia. Back then COVID-19 was nothing. I could record my places in my no plan plan way. The entire effort years in the making from about 2009 with divorce was to remove everything. House, car, property. Debt. Credit cards. But as a realist and not a minimalist. I did not downsize I became real. I could not fit nice shoes and jackets and pants in a 45 liter travel backpack. First was the Tortuga Outbreaker. It was nice but too much. Then an Eagle Creek bag which is half the weight and carries maybe 40 liters. So another bout of realism. Clothing went. Do not need any more than a weeks worth of clothing and never have. Things like t shirts and shorts are replaced in markets here. About $3 for a t shirt and $5 for shorts. So it’s all an exercise in being real. Not a minimalist or downsizing. And it’s worked. The slate almost blank.
The same with creating content on write.as. The new editor or IAwriter or Drafts or whatever your markdown editor is. The same process. It’s about having less but being real about it.
Now I sink down in a comfy chair in a nice coffee shop. In Hanoi. Was I successful? I don’t measure success or failure. Just like I don’t record tasks or goals or milestones or schedules. Those aren’t real either. It’s me and now.
In real time.
Autumn swings in. Such a beautiful day today here.
I just got back last night after a few days in Hue. Had a great time, ate, drank and walked. What more could be asked for? The hotel is a wonderful place to stay and close to wonderful restaurants both local and international. The forbidden palace was so nice to walk in. Last time there were lots of tourists. This time only a few Vietnamese visitors and most of the places I had to myself.
Now back for some days at my so called home. I have a longish weekend and then fly out again to three places over a week of going. I wandered to the French Baguette bakery for morning stuff. Now I sit with hot latte and a day of nothing. Last night did a burger at my favorite place. Today I don’t know. It’s best that way.
And the days here in Hanoi have cooled off. Now we have highs in the high 20s and lows around 20 or even 19. Beautiful time of the year here. The hot latte is a nice companion this morning.
Now I can also walk earlier in the day and be comfortable at it. I had gone out in the mid and high 30s and did the walking I like. It’s warm and the cold beers taste better earlier. Hahahaha.
Anyways welcome me back. The old retired guy returns to Hanoi. Friends ask me where I go next. I don’t know. Anywhere but the US. February is a bit of a distance from the here and now. I can’t focus on things in the distance so I gave up on it years ago. No todos, no reminders, no schedules. It’s easier by far.
Friday beckons. Cooler days and cooler nights. Hanoi changes again. I can sit in the bakery and watch this little part of the world spin by. Have a good time zone you all. Be safe out there.
I’m at the Hue Airport. Gonna fly back to Hanoi in a few hours. I accomplished nothing except wanting to return to Hue again and stay at the Cherish Hue Hotel. I was one of only a few guests. Now I had back to Hanoi in an hour or so.
But first some coffee and nothing time. I’m only back in the big city for a few days and then I take off for a week and three cities and some people to see. That will end all the travels in Vietnam I’ve arranged so far but I already started thinking of a weekend trip to Phu Quoc Island in late November. The flights round trip are less than $50. The island is nice for eating and doing water activities like sitting by it and not doing anything besides arranging a drink 😀.
Got an hour at the airport to go. Iced coffee and free WiFi. Yes! All set.
Good times in Hue. Food, wonderful people, the palace and some nice walks. Now back to busy Hanoi. Soon though will reach ultra busy Saigon. My taxi driver thought Hanoi better but still too big. Hue is a good size for a city I think. Places to walk and take pictures, the Vietnamese people that are so kind and generous, wonderful history to partake off, and the food!
So long Hue. You been grand.
So finished up some walking. Stopped and got the signature noodle dish of Hue. Namely bun bo hue for dinner. Now it’s beer or beers time. Tomorrow back to Hanoi. Been a really good time here. This city has this certain soul and heart which makes me want to come back. The people are warm and friendly seems like the way they are throughout central Vietnam.
Now I sit at a beer bar dwelling on nothing at all. Just time ticks away. It’s always the way of it. Whether it was Tainan Taiwan or Phnom Penh or Vancouver. I always asked after a place if I would come back again to walk and see. Most places I would. Some I won’t. Hue has that something that tugs at the heart and soul.
Tomorrow back to Hanoi in the morning. Goodbye to the sweet and kind people at the Cherish Hue Hotel and their care and hospitality. Legendary Vietnamese hospitality alive and well.
This is my second day in Hue. Today going to walk over to the Perfume River and do these walking trails. It’s been raining a bit here so may wait until afternoon and enjoy the hotel room. Yesterday did the forbidden palace for some hours. Really nice to see it and I think I was the only person in many of the areas visiting. Last night it was a traditional Vietnamese dinner from the Hue style. Very good!
Today will have some breakfast in the hotel later and then maybe visit a coffee shop down the street and relax awhile there. I don’t really have some plans or places I must get to. Yesterday doing the forbidden palace was the one thing I wished for on this trip and I got it done.
Now it’s coffee time. Then some breakfast and enjoying the hotel room immensely. There is a television in the room and it has a lot of western channels. I’ve been without a TV for months. Don’t miss it much. I did watch some news yesterday. Seems like more than a world away from my little slice of reality.
Just noticed the sky is getting lighter and there are blue patches. Maybe we will see sunshine today. The taxi driver told me no rain when I first got here. I guess I brought the rainy time.
Now it’s coffee time. Soon breakfast.
Still learning the new app!
Thanks for creating the app for us Angelo. Very nice to use a client to create posts. Just to add a bit. Here’s my photographs from today around Hue Vietnam. I’m just testing out the writing and posting using the app so now we post to my blog 😀.