Today I awoke to the sound of motorbikes honking. They wove past women balancing baskets of limes, ginger, and tropical fruit. Indiscernible chatter in a foreign tongue followed by laughter echoed up the walls to my window.
Good morning Vietnam.
Less than four decades ago my hippie parents sported long hair and peace signs and protested the war that many Americans and Vietnamese remember daily. In fact even the phrase “enjoy your time in Vietnam” sounds foreign to my mother’s ears.
But wandering the narrow alleys of the Old Quarter
eating streetside pho with the locals
and watching tai chi classes at sunset on the lake
Hanoi does not feel like a place tied down by its past.
It feels like a place of possibility.
And here, in Vietnam’s stunningly dramatic landscape with an intensely painful history
I begin the next chapter in my story.
Where I am the farthest I have ever been from home.
Where I do not speak the language.
Where I am traveling completely on my own.
Where I do not know when I will return.
This story has no synopsis.
I cannot predict what will transpire nor how or when it will end.
But that is exactly
what makes it
Won’t you come along for the ride?