February 18, 2011

More from Vietnam

I am losing track of the days here. Wednesday, we travelled to Halong Bay to spend the night on a boat. (Of course I instantly think of the Lonely Island's 'I'm On a Boat' when I say this).  We stayed in what they call the 'junk' and had amazing food on board. There, we were able to pick up a boat and some kayaks for getting closer to the people in the fishing villages, which were homes on the water. We arrived back in Hanoi yesterday evening, and only then, did we find out that one of the tourist boats sunk and killed 12 people, 10 tourists and 2 Vietnamese. Unbelievably tragic and scary knowing it was so close to us, and could have easily been us instead. 
Back in Hanoi, we drove out to a flower village and ate breakfast with a family. What is so amazing about it here, is how close families are, and how involved grandparents are with their grandchildren. More than that, they are more than happy for us to hold their babies, which I have been very lucky, and happy to do!
We walked around this village snapping images of the people there; saying hello or Xin Chao to everyone. Most people get a kick out of saying 'hello' to us and having us respond in English. 
After walking around, we came across a meeting with all men, who were very eager to feed us their rice and what I think were shots of vodka, though they had a tequila taste. Then, we were offered a free 'merry-go-round' ride where is was more a balancing act than anything, and the ride was blown with a fan. Very entertaining! Continuing out walk to a market, we saw a women selling live chickens. I am a vegetarian and part time vegan, and seeing this was okay, but hearing the chickens crying out was a bit too much and I had to leave as I was getting far too emotional for this. The animal/human relationship is much different here, and as I never see how the farm animals are treated at home, though I know the awful stories, seeing it first hand is very hard.
Tonight, we leave Hanoi and head North to Sapa, where apparently the scene is beautiful and poverty is blooming. People all over Vietnam are so happy to see us and try to talk with us. 

Here are a few images from Halong Bay!


  1. Nice shots, Alee. Is a Flower Village a village filled with flowers? I would like to see that...

  2. Excellent photos Aleyah. Glad you have this adventure so well documented. I am going shopping for a MAC - I need one to do the touchups! Oh, and a motorcycle too :)
    Cheers, M