Hanoi Day One

I tend to forget what torture these long trips actually are (especially in coach).  Frankly, if I did, I'm not sure I'd keep doing it.  Nine hours after the first flight from Miami to Paris, then 11 hours to Hanoi, not including delays. 
Now that we're here, after about 26 hours, it's 7 am and we're ready to go.  We have one free day in Hanoi and we plan to make the most of it.  Our friends, Danny and Bob arrived last night so they should be rested.
We booked our private tour from a local company, Footsteps Travel, recommended by a friend who used them recently.  We thought it would be a good idea to have a guide but weren't willing to sit on one of those big busses and eat meals in touristy places.  This way we had much more flexibility and ample opportunities to mingle with the locals.

Checked in...not a large room by western standards, but clean and comfortable.  Right in the heart of the old quarter.  We headed to Hoan Keam Lake for a much needed walk and some strong Vietnamese coffee sweetened with condensed milk.  (I know I don't even put sugar in my coffee, but we had to try it and it was surprisingly good)  We did the mandatory Pho for lunch and it was yummy!

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