I wanted to bring a few books with me to Vietnam. I didn’t know what the reading selection would be like here (turns out there’s plenty to choose from). Of course, I couldn’t bring very many due to weight restrictions. So, here’s what I brought:
The Quiet American …..of course! I’ve read it before, but it seemed appropriate to bring it with me and re-read it here. Besides, Graham Greene’s writing style is second to none.
The Reader …….I’d picked it up at a thrift store in Chico and hadn’t got around to reading it yet, so, why not.
Holidays on Ice ………..my good friend Amanda gave it to me. She knows I love David Sedaris and I figured I might need a good laugh now and then……thanks, ‘mander!
I also brought a few translation dictionaries and phrasebooks so I could make my way around without, say for example, intending to ask someone, “Where is the bathroom?” but in reality asking them, “Where do I go to prostitute myself?”…..you know, stuff like that.
And last, but by all means, not least, Canterbury Tales. I’ve been wanting to re-read it for years. I first read it somewhere around my early 30’s and fell in love with it. So, here I am in bustling, modern-day Hanoi, construction going on everywhere, cars and motorbikes zooming by, honking, beeping and I’m sitting at breakfast, eating my morning bowl of bûn tôm with my mouth afire (because I added a tad too much chili paste to my bowl), and I’m reading a book about a few sojourners’ tales written in Medieval England seven centuries ago and………..wow………………