It’s taken several days, more than a week, to find Vietnam in the midst of what is decades of travel to China coloring my experience. Up until the last couple of days, I’ve had a hard time not feeling like I was back in Guangdong or some other factory town in Southern China...until I finally started getting out of work early enough to eat street food and people watch while drinking beers in front of the Vinmart. Vietnam, as should be no surprise to anyone else, is definitely it’s own place...in many ways restrictive and communist, but at the same time frenetic and free. For a country with rules for where you walk during a factory shift-change, to also have only a passing recognition of street lanes and no respect for stop lights, strikes me odd. Granted, everywhere I’ve been in SouthEast Asia drives in a crazy ballet, but Vietnam feels the most communist of places I’ve yet visited and I would have expected more rule-following.
Is there even auto insurance out here? How do they determine fault? “You cut across three lanes and made an illegal right turn and ran into me!” “Yeah, but you were going backwards the wrong way down a one way street!”