11 May 2012

Doorways to silence in Hue

If I didn't make it clear in any of my other posts, Vietnam (northern to be specific) is incredibly loud and busy.  When northern Vietnamese people talk, they often sound like they're yelling at each other.  There is constant honking of horns, the sound of motorcycles, cars and large trucks.  Street vendors are coming up to tourists and bombarding them with their goods for sale and instead of asking to buy, it sounds more like yelling at you to buy.  Motorcycle taxi and bicycle taxi guys all come up and ask "taxi?  taxi?".  There is no quiet on the streets of northern Vietnam.  I was getting a bit aggravated with the constant stream of busy energy and aggressiveness that I was starting to question whether coming to Vietnam was even a good move or not but hoped that the south provided more refuge for the laid back and I was proven right.

In comes Hue (pronounced "whoo-ay" by many).  Not to say that the motorcycle taxi drivers weren't annoying, but a bit less aggressive and I think that's just how motorcycle taxi drivers are in Asia in general but the instant I got away from the train station, the streets are lined with trees, beautiful parks, nice shade, it just felt... kinder.  I make my way over to my hostel, get settled in and then decide to go to my one tourist trap, The Citadel.  It was the first time in Vietnam where I was left completely alone, no one approached me, and there were moments where I was completely alone wandering around this ginormous former royal compound for at least 20 minutes without seeing another soul.  I reveled in the silence and just enjoyed listening to the birds and my own footsteps.  The architecture there is absolutely wonderful and I loved imagining what it was like to live there as there seemed to be a resident for every royal figure for the last 1,000 years so there are a lot of private homes (villas if you will).  If you ever go, bring good walking shoes, the place is BIG-BIG.

The Citadel is loaded with so many ornate details, carvings, paintings, and unbelievably colorful.  One thing I really loved about this place are the doorways.  Take a look... 

I want some stairs like these!

What once was...

Workers taking rubbish from landscaping in

A worker just checkin' Facebook...

Back in the city...

If you can't find a parking space, just park it in the store why don'tcha?

Not the most amount of items I've seen carried by bicycle, but at least this time I had my camera

I loved the way she stood out in a sea of motorcycles

The cute little differences in our cultures, like spelling

The very cool tour boats


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