Hanoi laborers toil in frigid weather as temperature dips to 10 degrees Celsius

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Hanoi laborers toil in frigid weather as temperature dips to 10 degrees Celsius

People make a bonfire to keep themselves warm in Hanoi, December 27, 2021. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Temperatures in Hanoi dropped to 10 degrees Celsius between Monday night and early Tuesday morning because of a strong cold spell, posing a lot of challenges for people who had to earn a living outdoors.

The capital recorded average lows of 10-12 degrees Celsius, a deviation from at least 30 degrees typical of tropical Vietnam, between Monday night and early Tuesday morning, the National Center for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting reported, adding that average highs on Tuesday would be around 14-16 degrees Celsius.

The cold weather is accompanied by fog, showers, and winds of 10-30km per hour.

Despite the frigid weather, many residents still had to be outside to earn a living, according to the observations of Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reporters.

A street food vendor sits by a bonfire on a sidewalk in Hanoi, December 27, 2021. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A street food vendor sits by a bonfire on a sidewalk in Hanoi, December 27, 2021. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Le Xuan Bach, a 46-year-old snack vendor on Lieu Gia Street in Ba Dinh District, had to make a small bonfire to keep himself warm.

“Not many people would buy my snacks in this weather,” Bach said.

“My income is very low these days, but it is still better than nothing, especially when the Lunar New Year is near.”

Bach said he has worked as a street vendor for over a decade, and his usual working hours are from 8:00 pm to 2:00 am.

A man sells fried chestnuts on a sidewalk in Hanoi, December 27, 2021. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A man sells fried chestnuts on a sidewalk in Hanoi, December 27, 2021. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Tuan, a motorbike taxi driver, said he had to continue working even though his bones and joints often ache when the temperature gets low.

“Many people have shied away from motorbike taxis due to rising COVID-19 cases in the city, which negatively affects my earnings,” he elaborated, referring to over 1,000 infections documented daily in recent times in Hanoi.

Tuan said he moved to the capital about seven years ago to earn a living and to take care of his family in northern Nam Dinh Province.

Bich, a 61-year-old scrap collector in Cau Giay District, said she had to work despite her old age to prepare for the upcoming Lunar New Year, which is just over a month away.

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