In Hanoi, you pay your real estate taxes based on the frontage of your home. Thus arose the convention of the ‘tube’ house, a narrow looking building with a small doorway that accordions out on the inside to include all sorts of added-on rooms, balconies, staircases, ladders, water tanks, a hodge-podge of a home that sprouts features over time.
Much of the city has this higgledy-piggeldy vibe. Old and new stuff converge everywhere, ancient banyan trees sprout ethernet cables, ancient Confucian temples fly Communist flags, crooked old ladies in conical hats stagger down the road, one hand steadying a bamboo stick hung with wicker baskets, the other poking an iPhone 6.
(To be continued, maybe tomorrow)