To Tay Ho I go

I moved yesterday and started another three months in Hanoi. The place I am living now is Tay Ho district. Lots of expats and older folks like me too. The place I’m in now is cheaper than before but so much nicer. The owner takes good care of the renters and it’s clean. That’s opposite from the last place where WiFi never worked and the place was rather dirty all the time.

I also got three months extension here so my time comes up mid August now. No idea after that. Normally I would want to leave for some bit of time. If things were normal, and they’re not, I’d go to Malaysia or Cambodia. I don’t do Thailand. Maybe Laos or Sri Lanka. Nothing is normal so I have created a new word,


It’s all ok for me. I ceased trying to find the normal day by day. Today I am relaxing with a second latte at a coffee shop. It’s just a continuation of the moments of an old retired guy with no plan and all day to do it.

Hanoi is a good place to do notmal all considered. If I wanted a place to be locked down this may be it. There is nothing though I really want. Maybe to get away from expats since they are rampant here. Tay Ho has the share of expats here. So many. Too many.

I went through all the labels we have or that people call us:

  1. Expat
  2. Digital nomad
  3. Nomad
  4. Backpacker
  5. Begpacker
  6. Tourist
  7. Traveler
  8. Hobo
  9. Vagabond

So many labels of things. The young urbanites like the sound of 2 or 3 or 4.

Others like the word expat. It conjures up living and working in some other country. Others want to only visit so they call themselves something else. Maybe 6 or 7.

Then there are the true wanderers. Those that walk the highways and roads between the here and there. Moments spent in far flung cities. I’ve met them. They have stories but rarely tell. Decades spent wandering Southeast Asia. Vietnam, Laos or Cambodia are the places to wander through at no speed. Taiwan and South Korea are places footsteps are left behind.

Tay Ho is not the place to stay long for me. It’s a place to simply wander through and find an exit in August. A neighborhood in Da Nang perhaps. Another wandering trail of moments. First though get to another point on the compass. I wander not to the end or the beginning. It’s the getting there that counts.