When someone sneezes in Vietnam, you respond with "cơm muối", or "rice and salt", because ultimately, that's all you need for a good life.
What did I expect, when I visited the former Kingdom of a Million Elephants, the hidden jewel of old Indochina? An alternate Vietnam, where elephant did indeed roam the streets? A “lesser” version of Thailand, without the trademark smiles and tourist services to match?
Cát Bà island, a natural wonder and man-made dichotomy. Is it possible to still find secret places in such a rapidly developing space?
Every periphery is also its own centre.
Hanoi might genuinely be one of the few cities I've lived in where the sum of the parts is truly greater than the whole. Generally, Hanoi gets quite a bad press from a lot of western tourists; it's too polluted, the weather is temperamental and goes from one extreme to another, and most of all, the nightlife is incomparable to that of Saigon.
The following post may appeal to you if...
Your LinkedIn profile still reads “looking for opportunities” (well, at least you learned how to turn on that setting, that’s not a bad thing).
Your CV shows more ad hoc, overlapping work than most of your graduating class.
Never mind the London Eye, I've got my eye on London...