Holding on in Hanoi, by Annabelle

Hanoi, Vietnam

January 9 – 15, 2019

Hanoi – ok let me think mmmm CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We flew in from Vientiane (look at my moms blog) and arrived in a modern airport that had a bunch of really fast escalator things that are on the ground… AWESOME!!!!!! Anyway, we were trying to exchange our kip (Lao money) into Dong (Vietnam money) which is really hard when you are laughing so hard (because of the word Dong) and none of the stands exchange KIP, like what the heck??????? So we finally found a stand that exchanged kip and we exchanged all of our money and we headed off to get a taxi because the hotel is an hour away from the airport. So we got a taxi that was a van and there were two other people in it.

When we are about a mile away from the hotel we headed into the Old Quarter – it was crazy. We were in the middle of a roundabout and people are zooming all the way around us and trying to get in between us and we’re a big van and we’re trying to push through the crowd and we are having some troubles but we took a couple pictures, at least we tried to.

We got to our hotel and it wasn’t what we expected, and outside it was freezing cold, so it was the first time we had to use our jackets and hats in a long time.

We went to dinner that night at a place called Bun Cha Ta, and it was so good. Me and Amelia had vegetable spring rolls and my mom and dad had the Bun Cha soup. For dessert we had a yogurt and black sticky rice that was so so so so good and we loved it.

Then we went to sleep with our jackets and hats and bundled up with all of our covers.

When I woke up the next morning I looked out the window for an hour. It was so interesting – there was a lady selling fish and a lady selling vegetables. The lady selling fish probably wanted to say that the fish were fresh so she had big fish in a bowl without water and they kept moving and trying to get out and they were suffering so it was really sad to watch but I had nothing else to do.

We went upstairs to breakfast with our coats and hats on, The breakfast was middle-class, it wasn’t so good but it was ok. But there was a really funny staff member and she was showing us pictures of her little boy who was adorable. All week she would hide behind the door and scare us when we came upstairs for breakfast. One time I ran upstairs first, and me and her hid and scared my mom as she was coming up the stairs behind me, and she spilled her coffee all over the stairs. We laughed so hard.

Anyway, that morning I had a pancake it wasn’t really like a real pancake it was kind of more like a crepe but hard and had a lot of chocolate. I mean, it was kind of good but not for breakfast. All the other mornings since I didn’t really like the pancake I decided on the Vietnamese pho which is basically like soup with chicken and hot noodles. It’s really good and that’s why I had it for breakfast every morning. You wouldn’t thing of soup as breakfast right?Well, everyone in Vietnam has pho for breakfast, even in the places where it is boiling hot. I know, I don’t get it.

Me and my mom did a food tour and it was really fun. Our guide was named Sunny. She would always say stay together like sticky rice when crossing the street because it was so crazy with all the scooters! We tried a lot of different foods.

My favorite was the dessert at the end. It was coconut ice cream with coconut chips on green sticky rice. It was so good.

We went to the Vietnam Women’s Museum and learned all about the women in Vietnam and what they did in the war, how they dressed, how they got married, how they worked and all about their lifestyle. We took the audio tour and it was really helpful.

My mom made us get up really early one day to see everyone dancing around Hoan Kiem Lake. It was really cool because everyone was getting their exercise in before work. We saw people exercising, dancing, doing Tai Chi, playing badminton, and there were lines of women patting each other hard on the back, kind of like they were massaging each other. This was all going on at six in the morning!

We also walked around Hoan Kiem Lake when the roads were closed to traffic all weekend. It was really cool because it was like walking around Green Lake in Seattle. A couple of times we sat upstairs at Legend Beer and Highlands Coffee and watched the traffic in the big intersection near the lake. I took this crazy video!!!!!!!!!!

When we left Hanoi we were all kind of glad to be leaving, because it was so scary to even just step off the sidewalk!!! But we were also kind of sad because we got better at learning how to cross the street and we had seen a lot of interesting things and had a lot of fun there, even in the CRAZY!!!!!

Thank you for reading my blog about Hanoi, and make sure to read the next one!!!!!!! 😁🤗

Categories: AnnabelleTags: , , , , ,


  1. What an adventure! The food tour sounded delicious. I’m wondering if you have been writing any poetry lately. You are such a great poet. It would be neat to read some poetry from each place you visit and attempt to write a poem of your own in a similar style. If you do, make sure you share it with us!


  2. Hi Annabelle! We’ve missed you… glad that you’re back at the typewriter… ummmm… keyboard… ummmm… automatic voice to words device thing.
    Anyway, I watched your “Mad Traffic” video 100 times because I was sure I’d see a Daytona 500 style wreck resulting in a mountain of piled up scooters, cars and people… Amazing! Nevah happened! Best part was near the end when a bunch of about 10 people on the right side of the intersection kind’a gathered into a mini-mob and went all the way across to the other side all stuck together like a bunch’a sticky rice… and they made it unscathed! What I did see, though, was a whoooooole bunch’a really close calls! I wonder how many pedestrians in Hanoi have really flat toes!

    Well, your latest blog post made me want to look up two things on my computer… so I did. First, I found out that it takes Twenty Three Thousand One Hundred And Ninety Seven Dongs to make ONE US Dollar. That’s alot’a dongs to have to carry around. The Vietnamese Ladies’ pocketbooks must be GINORMOUS to carry all those dongs…!!! What if you wanted to buy a gumball out of a gumball machine? It would take you A WHOLE DAY just to put about six thousand dongs into the gumball machine just to get one gumball…!!… and by that time, you’d be so tired that you wouldn’t even be able to chew the gumball. The second thing I wanted to find out is what’s a “middle-class” breakfast, but I still don’t know. Some day, I’d like to have a “high-class” breakfast, but you probably have to eat breakfast with the Queen or the President to get that.

    Here’s some “Travel Advice By Pa”… I don’t think I’d spend an hour watching fish squirm around in a bowl, even if I had nothing else to do.

    ONWARD! The next adventure awaits just around the next corner!!… or across the next CRAZY intersection… (if you can get there!).
    LOVE YOU! Pa

    P.S. La-La wants her and me to go outside at 6 AM every day so she can smack me on the back. Nooooooooo… for some reason or other, I DO NOT get to smack her on the back… And tell Daddy that if that was a picture of him and Amelia doing a 6 AM outside dance, he probably shouldn’t be doing that. it didn’t look good and Amelia would be wise to find a different partner.


  3. Great blog love you all xx


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