Monday 4th February, Hanoi.
A fascinating day looking around the city.
The Vietnamese temples are totally different from those in Thailand and Cambodia. They tend to be smaller with vivid colours, reds and gold predominantly and are intensely decorated. They are exquisite.
The inevitable focus on the Vietnam war or the American war as it is called here set me thinking about wars since WW2. The west hasn’t got a terribly good track record what with Korea, Vietnam and Iraq 2 (although it can be argued that the real problem here was not the war but the lack of planning and reconstruction afterwards). But I suppose the big one worked out right in the end, the Cold War. Although even here there has been a missed opportunity as 30 years later Russia rather than opening up and becoming constructive on the international stage has reverted to type.
Ah well, I’ll just have to focus on the New Year here tonight although I will be soundly asleep by the time the fireworks start.


Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum


The “Hanoi Hilton”. Prison built by the French and then used by the Vietnamese for captured Americans. One of whom was John McCain


The single pillar temple


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