Monday, October 18, 2010

The rainy season is here...

I like rain, if I can be inside and listen to the rain pattering against the window and feel the cool air through said window if it doesn't rain hard enough to have to close the window. But when it rains in Hanoi, I begin to miss Sydney roads. Water may come up to my ankle on the UNSW Main Walkway and the wind will render any umbrella useless, but at least it's just water and it's clean. I don't think there's anywhere you can go in Hanoi in the rain that will not result in mud covering your shoes. (Future reference to self, new Converses do not make good shoes in the rain.) Seriously, where is all this dust coming from that the moment it rain, it has to become a mudslide on the road?

There's a principle to riding a motorbike in the rain in Hanoi, that if you are riding next to a car (or even just another bike) you might as well go straight into a puddle yourself. If you go into the puddle, and you go slowly enough, you can probably avoid getting splashed. If you avoid the puddle, the vehicle next to you will splash you, no matter what. 

I'm not sure what it is that other people get to eat that I don't, but there are apparently some obvious facts about traffic that just escape some Hanoians.

1. If you are stuck in traffic on a two way street, going into the lane going in the opposite direction will not solve the problem, it's only going to make the traffic jam worst.

2. If you are stuck in traffic, blowing the honrn non-stop will not help. It will only give people around you a headache. 

The mentality behind some people's inability to grasp the second fact, especially, just baffles me. To avoid a rant, I will just say this: Vehicle horns should be banned on the streets of Hanoi. Whoever invented this thing obviousy didn't consider people's ability to abuse it.

My boss tells me I'm the only Vietnamese he knows that can't ride a motorbike. Sometimes looking at the roads I travel on everyday, I don't have to wonder why. Bleh.