Hello everyone. Tomorrow I arrive back in Perth, to the world of $4.40 coffees, $300 hotel rooms, and taxi fares which make your eyes water … hang on, there are no taxis.
Only joking, of course!
Just jumping on the cynic-bandwagon – comparisons between cities should not be done frivolously.
In my trip to Hanoi I have responded to the city, as we all do when visiting a place, and tried to document it.
These are things which I will post now as a summary:
- Yes, I like Hanoi
- I love Hanoi. Why?
- It’s a world of small businesses – 1,000s of them, each of about 1-4 metres (3’3″-13’1″) in width (yes, 1m!) forming an unbroken network among snug, appropriately sized, human-scale streets (the arguments of what constitutes ‘human-scale’ are yet unresolved, but I have taken measurement of streets so we can begin to debate this thoroughly).
- Street widths of about 9.5m (31’2″) – building line to building line.
- Laneway widths of about 4m (13’1″).
- A city of 1,000 faces. I have yet to document this but I am considering it as a new category. The buildings of the city are so varied in form, shape and their projection outward toward the street that they present ‘1,000 faces’ to the eye. Does this matter? Yes. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending how you look at it) your city is dependant upon people having a positive sensory response to it: visually, smells, touch … and those other senses, and the ‘many faces’ presented on a building’s facade support this.
That’s about it for now.
Thank you for reading, and tell your friends!