Things you cannot transport on a scooter

Not much, man. Vietnam seethes with scooters, and in Hanoi – which, as far as I can tell, is the traffic- and fire-unsafety capital of the world – the locals’ transportational ingenuity seems to know no bounds. Here is an incomplete list of somewhat surprising things we’ve seen go by on the back – or front, or side – of somebody’s motorbike:

  • Five cases of wine.
  • A keg of beer.
  • A ladder.
  • 20 big clear plastic bags, each containing water and two or three sizeable live goldfish.
  • An armoire.
  • A floral arrangement the size of the driver’s torso, plus a huge bunch of 75 or so balloons shaped like ships and cats and stuff.
  • A weed-whacker.
  • Assorted mannequin parts.
  • Several huge bags of concrete.
  • Two dogs. Each approximately 50 pounds, just riding on the seat, one in front of the driver and one behind.
  • Nine full water-cooler jugs of water.
  • Four children.
  • A bowl of soup. That the driver was eating.
  • A stove. Not a camping stove. A regular, full-size, Western-style range.

Things we are waiting to see transported on a scooter.

  • Another scooter.
  • A coffin.
  • Ho Chi Minh.
  • A pool table.
  • A palm tree.
  • Geena Davis.
  • A goat.

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