We arrived at Hanoi, Vietnam around 1am. A Vietnamese driver picked us form the airport. I thought I could ask him some stuff but he can’t speak English. He helped us with our luggage.
We arrived at the hotel past 2 in the morning. Our hotel was called Hanoi Ciao Hotel. Its location was in a small alley. As it was the wee hours, the surroundings were dark. The lights of the hotel were off. I got nervous for awhile. The receptionist opened the glass doors. He just woke up. He told us to go to our room and talk about the details in the morning. He seems nice.
The room was furnished lavishly but the entire room shows its old surface. It doesn’t make it less significant though. The hotel was nice. My only problem was the shower. I can’t make the water hot, but my friend did not have a problem like this.
Our hotel was located near St. Joseph Cathedral. I woke up from the bells of the church. Of course, it was a Sunday morning. Breakfasts are free. I ordered my first authentic Vietnamese food.
My friend Arbin and I went out. We walked around Hanoi for the first time. We roamed around and looked for shops but we did not buy aything yet.
We went to the Cathedral.
These were the things I have noticed: first, Vietnam is supportive of their own local things, from foods to arts. My country Philippines is far fron it. I hate how my country likes foreign stuff more than our own. Second, there are so many motorcycles on the street. Most of them don’t follow the street lights. It was challenging to cross the street. I thought I’m already a pro because of my country lol. Third, most of the people here are slim and has white skin color. They are stylish. I could always see people with buttoned down polo shirts and blouses. I see women usually wear shoes with heels, even those who sits outside the streets. Fourth, I have noticed that the farmers working on the fields and those that sell on the streets are women! I’m not sure what jobs they have for men. Another thing I have noticed was that they still have this preference over men. I was asking for stuff, and the seller showed and explained to Arbin instead of me. The other instance was where the tourist guides talked only to him. I don’t know if I have a bitch-resting face or I appear as intimidating. As much as I want to, I cannot appear as intimidating while being a 5 feet tall only.
That night, we don’t know where to eat. We entered a random joint. The cook and the seller do not know to speak English so it was funny for us. We looked at the menu, there were no clues for us. There were no English translation and there were no pictures. Arbin randomly chose number two. He showed his two fingers and the cook thought two meals. She was pointing at the menu. So, Arbin pointed the second on the list of foods. That was crocodile meat I was eating, for all I know! Just kidding. It was a porridge with meat and aromatic vegetables.