Hanoi is a bustling city, and things are for sale wherever you look. Friday night our path from dinner to the hotel took us right past the Night Market. The crowds were fairly sizable, but not as tight or jostling as Taipei. Clothing was the dominant item, and we found a few items we liked including a polo shirt for me (helpful considering the clean/dirty clothes ratio at this point in the trip) and a fuzzy white vest for Leandra.
Saturday night was soggy with an intermittent rain, but we did brave the night market briefly, this time finding some socks. Saturday evening, Leandra spotted a sidewalk vendor selling Bat Trang pottery, including bowls similar to the ones we had on our cruise – in fact, it even had the Indochina Junk stamp on the bottom! A few other major hotels were represented in the collection too. She really wanted one with dragonflies on it so she quickly bought one before we headed to dinner. We liked it enough to return on Saturday to look for additional items!
Finally, one of our enduring memories of Hanoi are the ubiquitous shops selling North Face gear. Seemingly located every few blocks, one was across the street from our go-to beer place, so we ducked in to find out pricing. They wanted 850k (~$40) for a puffy jacket but we only had about 600k left, so we kept looking and found a store near our hotel that wanted 550k. I liked the blue (XXL by the way) but it had many loose threads, so I settled on a black model which seemed better constructed. Leandra offered 500k and they relented. $22 isn’t too bad for a coat even if it only lasts one season!