Hanoi is the capitol of Vietnam. It’s a small and bustling city, surrounded on all sides by water: a lake and river meet, with the city in the fertile crook. It’s also centered around a pond, with the old town sprawling out from it. I was reading Dune while traveling, and the way life in the novel is focused on water I saw reflected in the city’s orientation around water, although obviously water is anything but scarce in tropical Vietnam.
The city still contains many buildings built in the colonial French architectural style. Walking the streets was a joy in and of itself. They overflowed with markets, plants, animals, motos, of course, all going about their everyday life in a harmony that seems impossible for a city so bursting with activity.