8,745 MILES: DAY 13 IN HANOI

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

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Today was another day for boba tea. (This usually happens if the interviews we planned for cancel.) Trang and I met another one of her friends at a Taiwanese milk tea place and I had lychee milk tea with black tapioca pearls and the cream cheese topping again. It was pretty good for the first half of it, but after that it got to be a little overwhelming. The taste of lychee is so sweet it’s almost artificial. I wish I could take some of the fruit back home with me.

At the tea shop, I worked on transcriptions and realized that the audio recording from one of our interviews was really hard to understand because of all the background noise. I’ve come to the realization that there is no place in Hanoi that you can escape the traffic noise. Nowhere. This has been a frustrating issue in regards to recording clear audio, with the combination with the cultural expectation for women to be very soft-spoken. After watching a lot of YouTube videos, I learned how to somewhat reduce background noise in the audio recordings and thankfully Trang and I use a backup voice recorder that gets pretty good sound, as well. It’s starting to look like we will have about 12-14 hours in recorded interviews to transcribe. That makes me want to crawl into a hole in the wall. But I’m pushing myself to get it done (I’m transcribing the English interviews, Trang is transcribing the ones in Vietnamese) because there are only 16 days left in Vietnam. I wish I could skip to the script-writing stage already.

For a snack today, I tried this dish typical for Lunar New Year. It is a meat and green bean mixture wrapped in sticky rice wrapped in leaves, which naturally give it a green tint. You cut it with the plant strands and dip it in honey. It is very good and very filling.

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