Internet cafes are wonderful things. I'm in the old quarter of Hanoi and for a few cents can actually connect with a world half away. Let's see . . . how to sum up the last few days . . . hmmmmm . . . How about a few word pictures? There was the young woman half my size that beat me to death, popped every vertebrae, and twisted my appendages in directions they aren't meant to go the first night I was here and we decided that after 11 hours of flight time we should try a massage. Maybe we will decide differently in the future since "massage" seems to have many connotations!
We had a wonderful guide the following day and, yes, we saw Uncle Ho's body lying in state as well as his homes including one on stilts. We toured an ethnic peoples museum and learned there are 53 here in Vietnam.
We've sampled the food from the streets and so far so good intestinally speaking. I loved the rice and cabbage we had today at small tables just inside a street cafe. The mouse scurrying across the floor opened the door to some brief language lessons and the owner and I bonded over a Vietnamese phrase book.
Today we went to the Hanoi Hilton. My God . . . how can mankind continue to believe that war is a good idea???
Tonite we enjoyed coffee with a young woman from Britain who is teaching English in Japan and on holiday here. Last nite we enjoyed jazz with an Irishman and his young Vietnamese guide. There's a conversation on every corner if you are willing to engage. And of course, with my partner (for those of you who know him) there's always a willingness to engage.
Love to all who read this . . . I think of you at every moment of contemplation and believe it or not with all the pagodas, temples and historical points of reflection here, I've thought of you often.