Merry Christmas from Hanoi

Transporting Christmas trees Vietnamese style...

Transporting Christmas trees Vietnamese style…

Hang Ma in the Old Quarter

Hang Ma in the Old Quarter

Hanoi has been gearing up for Christmas since the beginning of December. All the shops and restaurants are decorated for Christmas and Hang Ma, the holiday decoration street,  is doing a roaring trade in all things related to Christmas. As very few Vietnamese are Christian, the holiday has been embraced with enthusiasm in a purely non-religious way. There are some wonderful photos of the laughing yoga club dressing up at Santa Clauses here. Christmas decorations have been appearing side by side with more traditional beliefs as you can see in the following photos.

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A temple doubling as a Christmas shop

A temple doubling as a Christmas shop

Burning paper money for ancestors

Burning paper money for ancestors

The weather has also been unusually spectacular for the whole last week. Clear, blue skies and a chilly (for Hanoi) 16 degrees centigrade. The hound is finally wearing her winter fleece. It has been great weather for walking around the city.

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The hound and I enjoying the sun

Walking up to the Opera House

Walking up to the Opera House

checking out the decorations

sniffing out the decorations

An old church which is now a designer shop

An old church which is now a designer shop

The Metropole Hotel

The Metropole Hotel

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Beautiful light around town

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Dappled light on Nha Tho leading to the Cathedral

Dappled light on Nha Tho Street  leading to the Cathedral

After we saw these we knew who would look great in a little pair of antlers...

After we saw these we knew who would look great in a little pair of antlers…

Nubian reindeer

Tala – the Nubian reindeer

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone!

I’m off to Burma today to meet my parents! Pictures to come in the New Year…

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