Danang to Hanoi and Last Days

We booked an overnight ‘soft-sleeper’ from Danang to Hanoi, making sure we had daylight to view the scenery between Danang and Hue.

train station, Danang, Vietnam
Danang Train Station

We moved to the dining car to get a good view. The train slowly rattled along with stunning views of beaches, mountains and foliage.

view from Danang to Hanoi train, Vietnam
View of a Beach

The dining car was kinda funky but comfy and if we stood up (to see over the misted up part of the window) we got the view.

dining car, SE 4 train, Vietnam
Dining Car

The sleeper was even funkier; and this was the deluxe version! We had top berths, but the bottom ones were empty for the early evening so we sat and played cards. At least the beds were bigger than the bus beds, plus the sounds and motion were much easier to handle. I think I managed an hour or two of sleep before our 5:30am arrival in Hanoi.

sleeper, SE 4 train, Vietnam
Our Berths

We arrived back at our apartment bright and early but, thankfully, a light was on in the landlady’s apartment and we were let into the building.

Our last week in Hanoi was spent packing our stuff into the appropriate bags for the airlines, visiting with friends, purchasing those last few souvenirs, watching TV and catching up on the blog. Plus a bit of strolling about, taking photos.

Transportation is always fascinating…

cyclo, Cau Giay, Hanoi, Vietnam
Cyclo in Lane
loaded motorbikes, Hanoi, Vietnam
Motorbike Loads
recycling, Hanoi, Vietnam
Re Cycling

We spent an afternoon at the cinema (Alice in 3D) and an evening visiting the Old Quarter…

Hoan Kiem Lake at night, Hanoi, Vietnam
Hoan Kiem at Night
3D cards, Night Market, Hanoi, Vietnam
3D Cards at Night Market

and on our last day we went for a long walk (since we’ll be sitting in planes for hours and hours)…

garbage in lane, Cau Giay, Hanoi, Vietnam
Laneside Garbage Disposal
new highrises, Hanoi, Vietnam
Old New Growth
wiring, Hanoi, Vietnam
Nest of Wiring

I’ve seen workers walking on the wiring while pulling new wire.

And lastly: a typical SE Asia T-shirt (I’ve a whole series of mannequin photos that’re pretty funny).

T-shirt, Hanoi, Vietnam
"Throw the Gum"

I’ve got one more page to put up: videos that never got processed until we got back to Hanoi. It may take a while (e.g. we’ll already be home) to finish them all but they do capture some of the essence of amazing SE Asia. Recently I realized that when I first arrived it was like being being visually reborn – everything was so different it took me a while to bring it all into focus, to comprehend what I was seeing. Not that I understand it all yet but at least I can focus and see what’s in front of me.

We’re going to miss the vibrancy of life here. There’s always something to see; no wonder people spend their lives on the streets, watching it all go by. When Sue flew out her seatmate was a young Vietnamese American, returning to Hanoi from Portland, OR. He commented that he found life in America boring. We can see why he felt that way now. Like any place there’s things to love and hate about Hanoi but it is endlessly fascinating. Especially wandering about at night. It’s like a dream world. Sometimes I’ve felt like I’m in a real life Disneyland, it’s so visually stimulating. I hope this blog has captured at least a snippet of that.

After I load up the videos I think I’ll keep this going. Hey… there’s life on Pender Island too!

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