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Vietnam

I finally found my barber shop

You might think that male pattern baldness would make going to the barber easy.  Less hair to cut should mean an easier haircut.  Apparently, it is, as long as you’re in America.  For some reason, while living in Asia, I’ve had trouble finding a barber who can give me a decent bald-man’s haircut.  Most of the places that I’ve been to have either trimmed around the edges, making me looking like Bozo the Clown, or have shaved me almost bald, which I don’t mind, but which my wife doesn’t like.

Not the look I was going for.

Again, I’m a bald man, and I don’t have very high expectations.  “Handsome” is something I’ve given up on a long time ago (I don’t even think about “sexy”).  Nowadays, my standard is: “not ridiculous.”  And yet Asian barbers can’t seem to get up to that level. Far too often, I’ve walked out of an Asian barbershop disappointed. It could be me, I don’t know.

Since the time of the smartphone, I’ve kept photos of a good haircut that I got in America. I show the pictures to barbers when I visit.  Again, American barbers see the pictures, and can give me exactly what I want.  But Asian barbers have difficulties.

In Vietnam, the first place that I went to gave me a so-so haircut, but it was really expensive – about US$15.  That isn’t a bad price by American standards, but it’s way more than I think I should be paying in the Vietnam economy.  And it wasn’t a great haircut, just so-so. When it was time for my next haircut, my wife took me to the place where she gets her hair done.  They did an acceptable job that time.  But the second time I went, it was Bozo the Clown again.

That’s why I was so happy with the place that I went to today.  Brothers Barbers is a real gem. It was a little hard to find.  We had to walk through a clothes shop to get to the staircase in the back alley. But when I saw the place, I knew it had promise.

This is what a barbershop should look like.

The shop is like a combination of man cave and barbershop.  While you’re waiting your turn, you can enjoy a single-malt whisky from their selection, or smoke a Cuban cigar on the balcony.

Would you like a whisky while you wait? Or maybe a coffee?

As soon as Mr. Quoc started on my hair, I knew I was in the hands of a real barber.

You want to go to this barbershop.

It was pricey, about US$17, the same price that I usually pay in America.  But I’m happy to pay it.  Mr. Quoc cut my hair exactly the way I wanted it (i.e., not ridiculous).  Plus his place is really classy.  And their website is cool, too.

Get your hair cut here. You will not regret it.

The Adventures of The Dumper

Chapter 1: Restrained.

Chapter 2: Liberated.

Chapter 3: Consequences.

The end.

Another city,…

…another Awesome Chair Of Awesomeness.

–in the Intercontinental Hanoi.

Didn’t have.

You aren’t fooling anyone, you know…

A coffee shop in the small village of Sapa.

Apparently, “Starbucks” is a generic word now, like xerox and kleenex.

Helmet Hair? No!

Vietnam has a helmet law for motorcycle riders. And some genius has developed a solution to helmet hair: An accommodation for pony tails.

If you’re within earshot of my sister,…

…plug your ears. Loud remonstrations will commence in 3…2…1…

Selling meat al fresco in Hanoi. Reason #486 why KJW will never visit me in Vietnam.

Thanks for the clarification.

On a random street in Hanoi.

Surrendering dragon surrenders

Sandstond sculpture on display in the Chăm Museum in Danang.

Want a screen protector? Go to Asia.

The last time I bought a screen protector in a cell phone store in the U.S., I think that it cost $17, plus I had to apply it myself. Approximately 17 air bubbles and an equal number of contributions to the swear jar later, I finally got the damn thing on.

Then I went to a cell phone shop in Asia. Oh, my. What a difference.

This morning I popped into a local cell phone store, and asked them to replace the screen protector on my phone. The nice young lady at the service counter pealed off the old film, used a cleaning solution to clean the front and back of my phone and my cell phone case, expertly put on the new protector (with absolutely no air bubbles), and handed it back to me.

The cost: 50,000 Vietnamese dong, about $2.20. Plus it comes with a three month guarantee. They will replace it for free if it gets scratched.