A friend just called to ask if I’ll be making special preparations for the Vietnam journey (the plane leaves on Wednesday night) considering that Typhoon Haiyan is hitting the coast of central Vietnam as we speak. “What do you want me to do?,” I asked. “Bring an inflatable life raft?” The latest report says Hurricane Haiyan, which has caused thousands of deaths in the Phillippines, has been reduced to a Category 1 event, which is very wet and windy but nothing that scary. By the time I arrive in Hanoi the ground won’t even be damp.