Phuong, Hien and Duc (plus Anne and myself)
02.18.2009 - 03.18.2009 72 °F
Hanoi's park of brides to be
Phuong was first to arrive
Hien was second
Duc was third
I'm changing hotels for the 4th time now since the Hanoi Lucky room has no window - to the Hoan Kiem Lake Hotel on Hang Trong - $20. for a balcony room (I needed something a little nicer for the final 2 days.)
Our Hanoikids Tour began promptly at 9AM, and we all walked and talked until we were black & blue around the mouth! After setting out from the Phoenix Hotel, we stopped for tea on Hang Bac, and then over to the Cathedral District, and who should appear before my very eyes - Mr. Duc from my 2008 Hanoikids' Tour. So good to see him, and we had much to discuss. Then we were off to an extended lunch and a cab ride out to the Botanical Gardens, where we found at least 12 or 15 engaged couples having their wedding photos professionally staged among the gardens. In Vietnam, the bride can choose from a rainbow of colors for the all important wedding gown - red, purple, yellow and blue were represented today. We walked back to the Old Quarter through the Capital area, again, and by the time we met the chaos near our hotels, I was totally bushed, and we said our goodbyes and just made it up the stairs at the Hanoi Lucky before my feet gave out.
I did manage to recover somewhat since I was starving, and walked out to the main street to the Festa Italian Restaurant on Ly Quoc Su (had been salivating all day since I happened to sit next to Duc and his pizza lunch). What a great pizza I had at the Festa - the chef/waitress/owner told me that she did her apprenticeship in Northern Italy, and again, a Vietnamese chef performed miracles in the kitchen (just wish the Festa were a few thousand miles closer to Portland!) 147,000VND for salad, wine and pizza + a very tasty basket of fresh breads.