Little Levin Phuc was with since just one day, that he was already boarding a plane to reach Hanoi, where we will do all the bureaucratic work to bring him back. During the flight we pass through many areas of turbulence, Levin Phuc was sitting on my lap touching everything that he could grab and possibly putting it in his mouth. We arrived in Hanoi exhausted and took a taxi to the hotel with Hang.
The following day Nicola left early with Hang to do some documents for Phuc’s passport. We stayed in the hotel, had breakfast and when he came back we went to the pool, although it was starting to rain. Phuc wanted to walk non stop, so we took turns to walk him around the pool while the other of us was swimming with Dao. Luckily there was not many people in the pool, because of the rain. We understand it can get very busy here, because the hotel pool is open to the public and when is sunny and hot a lot of local kids come here to swim and get a bit of refrigeration.
In the afternoon we left the hotel for a little stroll around the city. We found a little cafe near St Francis Cathedral where we used to go when Dao was only 8 months old and had a late lunch there, waiting for the storm to end and looking at the busy city from the balcony of this beautiful little place, new emotions mixing with amazing memories.
We stayed in Hanoi almost one month in 2008, when we adopted Dao and we absolutely adore this city, I think it was probably the best month of our lives, when, after such a long time as a pair, we met this amazingly worm happy baby and finally became a family. But it is impossible to experience the same thing twice, and as much as I am happy to be here now, as soon as we arrived I realized that so many things have changed. There are many more cars and less scooters, it is hard to understand why someone would want to drive an SUV in old Hanoi, especially when they still drive as they were riding a bicycle, but this is where the world is going, so I will stop complaining right away. As last time we found it almost impossible to go around the the tiny streets of the old quarter with a stroller, scooters parked on the uneven pavement, people cooking pho in the street, sitting around little plastic tables on tiny plastic chairs that occupy the whole sidewalk, nobody stopping to let you cross the street.
Anyway, we managed to get in a taxi and drove back to the Army Hotel under the pouring rain. And there we stayed until the following day.