I spent a lot of the New Year weekend wandering around in District 3 in Saigon. In between the busy main roads that stretch across the centre of the city, joining one district to another, there’s a network of increasingly narrow sidestreets, backstreets, alleys, lanes and… what’s narrower than a lane? I promised myself I wasn’t going to use the word “labyrinth” in this post, but it’s a real labyrinth. Houses and shops open directly onto the street, and food markets squeeze themselves into any available space.
Away from the chaotic main roads, people were busy with their shopping and cooking, but no one was rushing. It was starting to get dark and I was thinking of going home when I took a right down this alley and saw the lady in brown leaning on her fence and chatting to her friends across the way (just out of shot). Two curious boys stopped playing football for a moment to watch the tall, clumsy foreigner take pictures of their slightly bemused neighbour.