A numbers game.

Urban Retreat, originally uploaded by Aaron Michael Brown.

Sometimes, a little fresh air away from the motobikes and pho restaurants will do you some good.

I'm living just north of the old quarter in Ha Noi, Viet Nam, for the next four weeks. Jacob and I have about a forty minute walk by West Lake to where our classes are held, at the Ho Chi Minh Museum.

Let's go through some numbers and costs that explain the mood I'm in right now:
Pho: $1.30
Bia Hoi Ha Noi (Hanoi Draft Beer): $.13
Motorbike ride to class: $2.50
Time that the Liverpool/Chelsea game will be on next week, Hanoi Time: 2:40 am
Games left for the Portland Trailblazers until they play a playoff series, likely against the Rockets, and with as high as the second seed in the West: 2
Number of Years since the Los Angeles Lakers have won in Portland: 4
Points scored by Rudy Fernandez in 2 seconds against the Suns on national TV to end the 3rd quarter: 5
Opinion articles in the Oregonian's editorial page where the head of the BTA FINALLY came out against the Columbia River Crosing: 1
Number of times my host brother Lam said that my roommate Jacob looks like Jason Mraz ("he sing, 'I'm yorr'-horrr-hor-horrrs?"): 1, but it was funny
Time spent looking for this one happening bar with my friends Max and Kira, only to turn up empty when the cab driver dropped us off god knows where on the other side of town: 60 minutes
Number of international soccer games on our satellite tv right now: 4
Time at which I woke up this morning for breakfast: 6:15
Kilometers that a friend Max and I ran last Saturday night to follow a friend we met that night who was riding his motobike: about 1
Number of friends I've gotten to listen to the best band to come out of Portland in a while (and you know that's saying something,) Blind Pilot: dozens
Price of an ice cream cone along West Lake, on the walk back home from class when it's hot and humid: $.15
Number of great vietnamese propoganda signs I've seen: dozens
Days until I'm back in the states: 31
Days until I'm allowed to drink alcohol in states with the desired quantities I've managed to down here in Vietnam, South Africa and Brazil: 38
Days until I'm set up in some oncampus housing back at Macalester: about 50ish
Cost of living on campus this summer: technically free, but I'm sure there are some negative externalities about ten weeks in the dorms
Actual, meaningful blog entries I plan on writing for this over the next two weeks: 9 more to go (this one doesn't count)
Books I read on spring break: 2 (a kickass book on Kinshasa, the capital of DRC, written by an anthropologist and a photographer about the postcolonial struggles of african urbanism. and that Paul Farmer book everyone raves about)
Books on my to-read list for this summer: Seriously 25 right now
Photos left on my camera's memory cards: 1300
Photos I've already taken: about 5000


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