Sunday, January 22, 2012

My paper for Culture Class

    I have started my paper for culture class which is due February 10th.  People say "Oh you have plenty of

time."  First of all I have never written a 10 page paper, second of all this is Viet Nam and third......this is Viet

Nam!!  As I work on the paper I will include it here in bits.  The paper is to demonstrate our understanding

and experience in Tet, the Vietnamese Lunar New Year Celebration.  The begining is included below.

     Whether they are celebrating Tet, having coffee with friends, or “encouraging” foreign invaders to leave their homeland the Vietnamese people have a unique ability to come together.  During the first week of our stay here the social nature of the people was clearly evident.  People gathering in groups is much more normal than individuals out for coffee, meals, or drinks.  The energy of the city of Da Nang and of Van Cao Street has been changing since our arrival.  I felt everything around me become more alive and the nightly parties at the restaurants on our street became louder and larger.  On the few days before Tet Eve all I had to do was step outside of our house into the street to feel the electricity, anticipation, and celebration of Tet.  As I look around I see many streets lined with the flags of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam.  With this display of patriotism I am reminded of the American Independence Day celebration and I understand why people say that Tet is like all of the American holidays rolled into one.  For me Tet is all of that and so much more because of the connection with spirit that underlies it.  
     I will go into detail about my understanding of the spiritual connection in my next excerpt.  Last night we hung out with friends and we visited a seafood bar.  I tried frog legs so of course I had to do all of my ASL signs and mimetics around frog.  Everybody loved that and yes....tastes like chicken.
     I wanted to capture the energy of the place with a video but with our internet connection here the video will not upload.  Oh's Viet Nam after all.  Everywhere we go on these days leading up to Tet Viet Nam is throwing a party.  Tonight is Tet Eve the Eve of the Lunar New Year.  We are joining the program staff for the fireworks celebration.  It outta be a hoot!
Chuc Mung Nam Moi!!


  1. I remember a paper you wrote on the turkey vulture. I'm pretty sure that was 10 pages. Don't let the length psyche you out. If you dig in deep, it will seem not long enough! lol

    Are you feeling embraced in the groups and celebrations. Are they inclusive or exclusive? Are they singing, shouting, talking or some other kind of loud?

    Do you appreciate my feed back or should I keep still? lol Enjoy!
    I sent a link on your Flower market video to a FaceBook friend on the West Coast whom I know from a Skaneateles School FB group. He mentioned VietNam in his post today so I told him about you. If you get Phil Harvey joining the blog that's why. Blessings

  2. A great beginning to your paper, Jim! Now, you be careful out there while partying it up... ;) Enjoy yourself!