Hanoi Hijinks

….so I’m in Hanoi’s Muesum of Ethnology with Barbara and Peg the other afternoon looking at the peoples’ physical development from the stone age up to 1945 and I spot a row of busts on pedistals depicting Viet Nammers from ape to modern man, and I had a flash of humor brillance…I would cozy up to the Asian ape-appearing replica and take a photo of the two of us side by side to show that maybe we humans had not developed all that much after all. So far so good! I created the camera settings, and walked over to my soon-to-be picture relative and put my head next to his. The very heavy appearing head surprisingly turned out to be very light plastic and slid off the pedestal into the neanderthal’s plastic head next to it. Simutaneously my leg hit the first pedistal and it fell into the second pedistal, creating a heart-stopping falling domino affect. In a split second Barbara came to my rescue and managed to stop the second head and pedistal from crashing into the third set, and then Peg joined us to help put the display back together again in a resonable facsimile of the original placements. Just then, three seriously stern-looking guards rushed on the scene trying to figure out what the Caucasions had just done. Peg and Barbara asked me if I was ok and I answered yes. Barbara then whispered “start limping” and Peg joined with “act like you’re hurt”. So I did my best Quisimodo with extra leg dragging while the guards kept looking at me. Barbara said “keep limping out of here”, and we three slowly departed the newly designed wing. A minute later I looked around and we were not being followed, but at the same moment I heard some chimes ringing. We moved to a third wing and again chimes rang. Peg guessed we were being watched by cameras and the chimes indicated to potential future prison officials which section of the museum we had just entered. It was with a large sigh of relief when we finally exited the building to the street. I have to admit the state security in a North Vietnamese government building are very, very serious-minded in both demeaner and facial expressions. In great contrast, the people themselves are very gracious and warm, and smiles flows easily and often. A short distance from the museum, we came upon a china shop and the sisters said simutaniously…”keep walking Alan!”

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About Alan G Billingsley

My career has been varied, including time as a newspaper deliverer, lifeguard, bubble gum maker, door-to-door detergent promoter, telephone book proofreader, short order cook, private employment agency counselor and owner, office and credit manger, infantryman, pots and pans salesman, Chinese restaurant cook, Chinese restaurant owner, public employment counselor, budget analyst, tax analyst, grant administrator, radio announcer, radio and television show host, disk jockey, automobile valet, child advocate, and now retiree. I've seldom been bored.
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