Tetsuji Ito is professor of psychology researchers of the Faculty of Social Humanities, Ibaraki University, Japan. He lived in Hanoi 10 months (range 1998-1999) and have a chance to taste the life of the street in Hanoi. Since then, every year he will return to Vietnam. From Japan, a post he recorded this experience interesting.

Hanoi, where I live in the years 1998-1999, was a bustling city with a lot of motorcycles and goods are sold everywhere. Compared to Hanoi in 1992 – I first arrived, when it was a quiet town a bit sad, travelers do not even know where to eat – they are big difference.


Feet of street life

However, after this period do not seem to have suddenly increased the number of motorcycles, traffic and bustle. If you only see, probably not notice a significant change in Hanoi today than 10 years ago. However, now almost no longer see the shadow of the boys selling postcards, the girl sale palm-leaf conical hat as souvenirs around Hoan Kiem lake. These foreigners like me that sometimes kids promiscuous along insisted: “Buy this postcard just 1 dollar.” Although I have very sympathetic to Vietnam, but was also uncomfortable. Yet now, when no longer see the shadow anymore, I feel a little tottering: Where do know little boys and girls now? what do they do?

And even a pedicab – feet of street life in Hanoi, almost no longer see well anymore. Now can only see the foreign tourists stay at luxury hotels, deliberately walking around the old town area by cyclo, but unfortunately rather have lost cachet of these cars went rushing, dissolve into the life of Hanoi. In the current speed of the cars are on a lot more, the existence of the cyclo, which is just smaller than the speed of the bike, of course is impossible. But remember that despite the change that is required in the flow of time, it seems deep down I still feel a vague sadness. Is it possible to restore the cyclo deliberately, to confront with the trend of the times? (to be continue) travel to vietnam