Tuesday, May 3, 2016

"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion" - Dalai Lama.

The long road to Tien Phuoc was again travelled to this trip.

My lovely group of students pooled together a thank you gift for me in the form of a donation towards a cow.
So, off I went down the bumpy road to find Mr Long and his family.

Mr Long has had one kidney removed and now the other one is failing also. He is bed ridden and so, there is no bread winner. His wife, travels 5-6 hours one way to Danang, the nearest large city to sell lottery tickets and peanuts on the street in hope of providing for her family.
They have 4 children: 16 year old Vu, 13 year old Viet, 11 year old Vinh and 3 year old Vuong.
I showed up with a food hamper and some clothes and toys for the kids.

Little Vuong's eyes almost popped out of his head when he saw lots of colourful things!
The blocks were a hit once he worked out how to open the bag.

Mr Long had the most gentle eyes and would shyly look at me and say thank you.
They didn't have much, a shack of a house with patched up wood panels to cover up holes.
Again I am reminded how lucky I am every time I come back out here.
Ellis called Vietnam my reset button and that is exactly what it is. When my world gets to much, I return here and meet such beautiful people who persevere in the face of adversity and tackle it head on with a smile. Makes my problems seem small in comparison. A non issue.

I also went by to check on Mr Nhan and his three children we support to attend school. On my first visit, they were so shy and would not come near me or look at me. The second visit, they would look at me from a distance and with each subsequent visit, they have been getting warmer. This last visit, the little boy Hoang Nam came running out to greet me, followed by his sisters. They were smiling so widely when I arrived and followed me around. They have grown a little, but still so skinny. The father was pleased to see me and said that he had a good year thanks to us and supporting the school fees for the kids - it has taken the pressure off him for that. The girls were proud to show me their merit certificates from the school year.
The cow is doing great and has had two babies! Awesome!

We also went and saw Mrs Sen. She looked a bit better than when I met her last time after the sudden death of her husband from falling out of a tree at work.
Her children are so tiny. The 5 year old still fits into a size 2 clothing range.

Donations have also been able to support her 4 children to attend school and ease some pressure off her as well. Hopefully the cow we bought her will have a baby soon and she can start getting an income!

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