The other day I was hanging out at a friend's house in Vietnam. We had just put her kids down for their afternoon naps and were talking. Being a freelancer who does not have a 9-5 job means I have the freedom to fill my days with coffee breaks with people or can grab random lunch dates or sit on a couch into the late
afternoon talking to my girlfriends. I am constantly on my laptop checking emails, reaching out to clients, and editing photos or content from gigs late into the night and on weekends. So I feel justified taking random breaks when I want.
The problem with that is when I have too many hang out sessions and realize that I haven't taken any photos for a week! I start getting twitchy and weird at that time... so I hopped off her couch and promised to be back in a couple of hours. I just had to take some photos. I decided to walk around my neighborhood and capture some images of daily life.
I am living in an area called Thao Dien in District Two in Saigon, Vietnam. District Two sort of looks like a peninsula because it has the Saigon River wrapping around a good majority of it. The area definitely has a heavier expat presence, but there are, of course, a ton of locals here as well. It's a bit quieter than District One, which is basically the heartbeat of downtown Saigon.
Simple things like vegetable stands, Vietnamese flags waving all around, handmade brooms for sale on corners, and plastic chairs out for people to sit on while they enjoy street food, there's so much to see and photograph all around. I love capturing the little details. Vietnam is a colorful and fascinating place. It's sometimes hard to imagine the amount of war and unrest the country went through only a few decades ago. I'm so happy I'm able to be here now and see all this amazing place has to offer.
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Danielle Desnoyers is a traveling freelance photographer with a focus on humanitarian, travel, and family photography. She currently splits her time between the United States and Vietnam with travels to other countries as well.