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Spud, just 4 more days!

I just hope my Spud remembers me?


(Spud at Day and Night Dogs, Oregon City)

I was beat today, and just tried to rest a little. Had a really nice lunch at Huyen Huong at 20 Bao Khanh St. I was looking for Bun Cha (highly recommended by Thuong), and it was very very good. Bun Cha is a Hanoi speciality of pork patties eaten with cold rice noodle, a thin flavored broth of some sort, the ever present salad/herb assortment - all mixed together. I had to ask how to eat it as it was only my second time, and this senior has a terrible memory. I also had some yummy crab spring rolls with fish sauce dip on the side + Hanoi beer. I asked for ice with my beer, and they came back with a mini-champagne bucket. I just picked this place at random after rejecting all those tourist haunts along the lake that have mostly Western food, pizza or fancy, fancy VN places that look too plastic for me. This place was empty, it was super clean with flowers on the table, etc., and those fancy cloth napkins folded like birds of paradise. As I ate, I was entertained by city electrical workers trying to guess which of the thousands of wires overhead were responsible for doing their job correctly (Vietnamese street wires are something to wonder at - you never saw such a mess of ugly wires - looking like some 10 year old put them up 30 years ago).

I had just enough energy to crawl back to my hotel and hit the sack. It's now 2130, and I'm wondering how I should spend the rest of the evening. Guess I'll enjoy my in-room fruit plate: mango, apple, banana and tangarine. I finally figured out how to drain bathtubs in this country (a real mystery to me - left the one in Sapa full - actually thought it was broken). One does not flush paper down the WC here - VN sewer systems are somewhat delicate, but no problems at all finding places to go here, and most are modern, Western style. These people are poor, but actually extremely civilized. I have avoided no foods at all, but rather take my 2 daily Pepto tablets to coat my stomach, and it seems to work. I CAN NOT LIVE WITHOUT ICE, as many tourists do in Vietnam.

Tomorrow I'm treating myself to another foot massage - no doubt about it. Can't decide if I need to buy more pieces of art here - it's cheap and very nice. My apartment is so small, where the hell would I hang it? Many shops have a resident artist who copies other artists' work, and very well! Laquerware is another beautiful item here - I saw very unusual, modern-style pieces starting about $7. today - made me wish I liked modern styles! Even some of the cheap souvenirs are unusual and worth looking at.

I'm off to my fruit, and then to bed. Good night.

Posted by Daawgon 12:01 Archived in Vietnam

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