Thong Nhat Park (Reunification Park)
Disclaimer: if you know this guy, or if you are this guy, and I’ve offended you in my example. I apologize.
So what you’ll see quite often throughout Hanoi is a bunch of locals, male or female, standing around, playing hacky with a little shuttlecock between themselves to burn time (Wikipedia informs me it’s referred to as đá cầu here).
In the more touristy areas of Hanoi, a common sight you’ll see is a tourist, or at least non-local, of some description who has decided they want to join in. So they get into the circle, and try and have a go. Ten out of ten times. They are shit. And nobody will tell them. So they obliviously play on, looking to have a good ‘real’ experience here. When all they are doing, is being a weak link and completely ruining the game whilst they have this fat grin on their face. I find it annoying.
Hence why we have this photo. This bloke wasn’t playing hacky though, he was playing soccer. And I actually think he wasn’t too bad. But the photo of him fit my little rant well. So here he is. Oh, and he was quite noticeably in a lot worse shape than anyone I saw that afternoon, so it was humorous. So yeah, story and photo aren’t really related at all. Great writing Noogs.
Moving on, the photo was taken in Reunification Park, just south of Hoan Kiem lake, and without a doubt, my favourite place to spend an afternoon in Hanoi. Great local people watching. All manner of shit goes on there. Vietnamese aerobics (absolute must see) with carted in public announcement speakers. Outdoor impromptu weight lifting. Badmington. Outdoor ballroom dancing. A mini rollercoaster. Fishing. Swanboats. Amateur photo shoots. Fresh coconut vendors. Jianzi. Lemon ice tea. Jogging. Blading. Skating. Cycling. Mums in totally questionale outfits walking with their children. Electric toycars. Intense chinese chess matches. Kite flying. Basically, if you are visiting Hanoi and want something awesome to do. Find this park. It definitely beats almost anything else anyone will recommended in Hanoi.
It also makes for great photo taking. Something I am trying to improve on here. So without further ado – here are some random shots I took that afternoon.
p.s. whilst I type this, I have the latest Transformers film playing in the background. Holy shit. Bad movie? Wiki tells me it raked in over a billion at the box office globally though. Dear lord. This Vics Secret model who is the lead actress is painfully bad.