Honda nightmare ~ Hanoi, Vietnam
Nov 30 2001

With barely a car to be seen, rush hour on the streets of Hanoi is at first frightening, then amusing and finally one realizes that motorbikes and bicycles make this mass movement of people more efficient than rush hour in the west. The Vietnamese cannot afford not to be. It was a real lesson to Julie and I who assumed that the West is wealthier because we are more efficient. Consider the petrol needed to transport two people here and compare it to the long traffic jams we have all suffered through in the west - look ahead and behind and as far as you can see there are cars at a standstill with solitary individuals locked in artificial environments. The carpool lane (if there is one) is empty except for scofflaws. Efficiency in the west is limited to our factories where the wealth it brings means we need not exercise it in our private lives.


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nigel & julie snow