Hanoi, Book Reviews, Jet Lag Epiphanies

July 23, 2016


The plane tilted over a rice field. Just before the wheels hit the runway – that moment when you see actual humans wearing conical hats, rather than the abstract topography that deserves a David Attenborough voiceover (I love you, David) – all my inner organs constricted into a rubbery ball. The wheels hit Earth at about 8:26am.

I’m back in Hanoi.I have never wanted to physically hug a city before. Imagine seeing someone you were in love with once, after years of separation. It feels like that.

Some friends are still here – shout outs to Thu (thank you for dinner last night), John (thank you for a roof/conversation/bed), Annie (thank you for today), Michelle (welcome back too!), Giang, Hong Van, Kem (I can’t wait to see you all), Nhung (and you), and Tra (and you too!).

[No/Every]thing has changed. I’m staying in Truc Bach on the third floor of a house. If I only swallow rice, tofu, sautéed greens, and coffee for the rest of the week, that’s just fine. Yesterday I walked around a lake, hung out at a cafe, read a book, got my hair washed, bought another book…

  • Just finished: Kevin Brockmeier’s “A Brief History of the Dead”. Awesome. The story bounces back and forth between a pseudo-afterlife, and the last human alive in post-apocalyptic Antarctica. Sounds too good to be true, right? Actually, this is one of those life-affirming books, that shines a light on the random moments that become the most memorable ones. Brockmeier does it again. Five stars.
  • Current Book: Sara Maitland’s “How to be Alone” (Seemed appropriate). So far so good. More to follow.    

Also, Still v. jet lagged. Here are some epiphanies I had between 3:30 am. and 5:00 am today.

  1. I want to try a sensory deprivation chamber. (Reader, have you ever?)
  2. There is a cool Tibetan Buddhist Nunnery I found online. Maybe I can sponsor a nun (Reader, thoughts?)
  3. The cure for fear is knowledge
  4. “Home” is an emotion
  5. Solitude + poor adjustment to new time zones = creativity?

The rest of the week I will be in Hanoi. I plan to ride as many motorcycles as possible. Lovely reader, please email me your address if you want a postcard.


4 Responses to “Hanoi, Book Reviews, Jet Lag Epiphanies”

  1. Miriam Says:

    You’re so adventurous! Be safe!

  2. igplotzk Says:

    You have our address, yes? (-;

  3. Haley Says:

    Rozzie has writing skillz. Thanks for the entertainment, keep em coming. Have fun!

  4. Aunt Sarah Says:

    Are you still in Vietnam, Roz? Aunt Sarah

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