Postcards from Hanoi
Buffalos, scooters, fruits and pointy hats. That was basically my first impression of Hanoi after first arriving in the city. As soon as I got out of my taxi I got run over by three scooters and slightly more deaf because of all the claxons. The chaos overwhelmed me, and my first thought was nothing else than ‘Where the hell did I end up?’. I was convinced that I didn’t like Hanoi and that I didn’t mind leaving the place. It was way too busy for my taste, way to hectic and too chaotic.
After only being in Hanoi for one night I left to see the beauty of Halong Bay and made my way back to the city after three days of cruising through the rocks that shape Halong Bay. It was then, after returning back, that I began to understand the city. I spent two days more in Hanoi visiting all the famous highlights and all the small streets that make Hanoi Hanoi.
I began to understand that the chaos was ‘organized chaos’, I began to smell great street foods, I began to discover great shops, I began to talk to the sweetest Vietnamese people and I began to love the colors, the busyness and the atmosphere that I now understand is typically Vietnamese.
I don’t know why it took me so long before I started liking Hanoi. All I know is that my second visit to the city was far more pleasant than the first one. Ah, maybe it had to do with my jetlag.
Hanoi is one of those places that photographers need to visit. There is always something going on, there are always moments to capture and photographing in between the chaos basically is an art itself. I loved photographing the city – even when before I loved the city itself.