Thursday, April 30, 2009

Truly Vietnam?

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Street vendors and cyclos... A bit cliche I now, but you will find these sights from another time in the Old Quarter, which is the most touristy part of the city. Everywhere else? Street vendors and... motorbikes! ;)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Hide and seek

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[in the Temple of Literature]

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Breakfast time

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Want some bánh mì? This lady has plenty in her hands... And I sure could use a couple of those for my breakfast.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Coal seller

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I already mentioned it last year, and it's time for a second take! You will find those 'coal-cycles' around town, selling the black blocks to the street restaurants. It probably is something that you will no longer be able to see in just a few years from now as Vietnam is growing relentlessly in spite of the global downturn, so enjoy it while you can!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Watching over

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[next to the Hồ Chí Minh Mausoleum]

Saturday, April 25, 2009

'The' junction

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This probably is one of the most famous junctions in Hanoi. Why? Well, the photo probably doesn't manage to give you the same feeling a video would do, but trust me - this is often where the tourists visiting Hanoi go take the 'I can cross a vietnamese street' test!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Shop-house

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Once more, not technically Hanoi, but not very far - this is Nam Định. Couldn't resist the sight of this cute little shop, which apparently surprised the lady in there!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The balloon boy

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[somewhere near Hồ Hoàn Kiếm]

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The stream

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For some reason this road seems to have a never-ending flow of motorbikes, bicycles, cars and such. Suffice to say that crossing it is not for the faint-hearted!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Lost in thoughts - 2

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[somewhere in the outskirts of Hanoi]

Monday, April 20, 2009

Face à face

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As you know by now, the Temple of Literature is one of my favourite spots in Hanoi. Why? Just because when I bring my visitors there (it's one of the 'must see' in the city), I like to look around at the variety of people who gather there. It's not only a touristic landmark, no; it's also a place where students meet for class photos, where families bring their children for a stroll in the park... All in all, a pretty fascinating place.

I saw this lady resting on the steps of the temple, seemingly exhausted after a day walking around in the city. Apparently she found inner peace!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Old friendship

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I like how those two exhale such a sense of tranquility in their conversation... Don't you think?

Friday, April 17, 2009

Walking by

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[somewhere in the Old Quarter]

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Green paddies

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Sometimes you just need a short break from the city, its traffic and its noise. You won't need to go very far from the center - but what a break it is!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Vintage

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I'm a sucker for nice Vespas - no matter what generation!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Bikes of burden

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One of my favorite activities now is to just stand by the road side or at a junction and wait for this kind of shot to present itself. Fellow photographer Hans Kemp even published an entire book about it - Bikes of Burden. A highly recommended and fun read, especially for those of you who have spent some time in Vietnam, whether a few days or several years!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Bus stop

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[somewhere on the other side of the West Lake]

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Hard workers

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Something I find quite striking in Vietnam is the proportion of women involved in the 'tough' jobs which, by most of western standards, are traditionally handled by men. You will find those courageous women doing road works (as you can see above), digging, collecting garbage - while, at the same time, handling the family duties... No wonder why many people say Vietnamese ladies have the strongest character! Kudos, mesdames.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Fruits and booze

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Whether you are craving for fruits or just wanting to stock up your bar, this 'convenience store' will cater to your needs. Tangerines, mangos, dragon fruits, apples, oranges, pomelos, and Vodka Hà Nội: everything's there!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Lost in thoughts

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[at the temple of Literature]

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Al fresco

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This is one of the hundreds - what am I saying, thousands - of street restaurants you will find in Hanoi. Not only will they be very inexpensive; they will also probably serve the yummiest Vietnamese traditional dishes! For this particular one, you can read from the signboard that they offer different kinds of noodles (phở, bún, mỳ) cooked in different styles.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Meditation

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[somewhere on the banks of Trúc Bạch lake]

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

You may now kiss the bride

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I quite like the idea of wedding photos in the middle of the crazy traffic from the Opera roundabout!

P/s: the pictures will now appear smaller on the site, but they are available in high resolution on Flickr (click on the image).

Monday, April 6, 2009

We've got a winner...

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... and no sore losers.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Street smoking

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Worry not, this is tobacco. This kind of pipes is very popular both among the old and the young generations in Vietnam. Some models are much bigger than this one, and do a whistling noise that is unmistakable!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

No trespassing

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That's a pretty subtle way of saying 'I dare you'.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Generations

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I usually have a hard time to take portrait photographs of people when I'm in Hanoi; a number of them will simply refuse. So imagine my surprise when this happy grandfather asked me to take a picture of him and his granddaughter! I hope you like it as much as I do.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The departure

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[waiting for the train bound to Hanoi]

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Chopsticks & spoons

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[in a restaurant near Hanoi]