Things get done in Vietnam
Vietnam has not been legislated out of sight. Or at least if there are laws determining the lives of Vietnamese it seems in the area of transportation nobody follows them. And of course, it works fairly well.
Now one might think that legislation and local laws are totally necessary to protect the individual in society. You would think and in all likelihood agree. But to a certain extent this protection can get so overwhelming that it stifles life.
And maybe it has to do with people handing over their responsibility for their own well-being into the hands of the state. Somebody is to blame. Everybody else. Maybe.
In the area of transportation anything goes! Eggs are stacked in trays on the back of a bicycle. A person on a motor bike will carry a ten meter section of aluminium pole, a dozen chicken will hang in a cage carried from poles across the shoulders. And all of these business people use the roads as normal. Moving along in the middle of the traffic.
If it fits onto a vehicle of some sort it will be transported. Actually not quite. If it needs transporting, it will be moved. Somehow. Gravity defying so sometimes.
It’s brilliant. It is a true reflection of the spirit of mankind. The drive, intelligence, motivation and the plain determination of people to look after themselves and their family. That doesn’t mean there aren’t hardships, injuries, road deaths and much more that could be avoided with stricter rules and regulations.
But that’s not the point in Vietnam. For people it is all about getting things done within the constraints of limited budgets and even more limited resources. A communal drive towards looking after yourself, your family and friends. Let’s hope that the creeping Western influence won’t kill that off too soon. It’s part of Vietnam’s charm.
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Published on 7/5/10