Hanging High

Life at the top, washing windows At 7am Bao rides the freight elevator to the top of one of Saigon’s newest high- rises and unlocks the door to the rooftop. His partner is already there setting up the rig – stringing thick ropes around a pulley then across a wooden board, looping and double looping. After 20 minutes of … Read more

The White-Collar Debt Collector

Time to pay up “My hunting season starts now,” declares Tu Phu. “Nobody likes to hear that but me and maybe my clients.” However, Phu doesn’t go into the woods or forest to hunt because his prey is people. He’s loathed and feared; people hide from him when they know he’s coming. See, Phu isn’t a game … Read more

Our lives as… ball boys

Two teenagers open up about scoring their dream jobs, rich customers and Rafael Nadal Hoang: I’m 17 years old and I’ve been working here for four years. Duy: I’m also 17. I’ve been a ball boy for seven months. Hoang: Our job is pretty simple, we pick up tennis balls for customers who come to play … Read more

My life as… a pho cook

My name’s Quyen, and I’m 22-years-old. I’ve been selling pho for five years now. This is a traditional family business. My dad started the restaurant, and now my brothers and I are helping him run it. We’re from Dong Son Village, in Nam Dinh. Nam Dinh Province is known as the birthplace of pho, so … Read more

MY LIFE AS… a gray hair plucker

Hello, sit down please! Oh, my name? My name is Hang. How old am I? I was born in 1987, so please don’t call me chi (older sister), it makes me sound so old! This is one of the first grey hair plucking shops in Hanoi. It’s been open for three years now. I’ve been working … Read more