For those that live here what we are about to do is hardly an adventure but all a part of everyday life here on a Friday night.
However, we find it somewhat of a challenge to walk the streets of Hanoi at night as the main streets are flowing with a continuous stream of beep... beep.. beep traffic.
Our outing is an immediate success as we get to meet one of the youngest residents here. He is just curious and does not say a word as we try our best Vietnamese greeting, sin cho. His mother and her friends are more interactive as they do their best to try and communicate with us in our native language, English. It is a nice encounter and a great way to begin the evening.
Our next challenge comes in trying to cross a street where it seems like we are at a Daytona Beach bike rally. Even as we are standing at a pedestrian crossing, we quickly figure out that no one is going to stop and allow us to freely cross the street.
Ben and I decide it's time to get a little crazy and do it like the locals. We enter the stream of scooters and just keep walking. Beep.. beep.. beep and with a little and skill we survive. We watch from the other side as the ladies build up the courage and attempt the same thing. We all find it hysterical and the experience gives us a good laugh.
Big bowls of soup along with a chicken and seafood stir fry with lots and lots of self added peppers and the adventure so far has been worth it.
Next we are crossing the streets again this time as seasoned professionals. We are headed to another common happening in Southeast Asia, the night market. Here we sample some fruits that we are still not sure what they were. I think they tasted like a pickled green mango.
Our stop here is more for the experience than it is to really buy anything. However, for real shoppers I am sure there are ton of bargains to be found.
On the quieter side of town we take a stroll along the edge of a huge city lake where our night almost ends on a sour note. We stop and listen to probably the worst street performer violinist that I have ever heard.
However, his attempts at creating beautiful music did remind me of a time I tried to play the saxophone in my dorm room at college. I think I scared the hell out of my next door roommates as they quickly came over inquiring whether or not a herd of wild elephant had broken into my room.