“In Sydney, Vietnamese from the South live mostly here in Cabramatta or in Bankstown. Those from the North gather in Marrickville, nearer to the city center.” Anh Hung told me after ordering the noodle.
“Yeah, I would like always to see how different people live and organise their life. It is always interesting to be with the people.” I said.
“You will see that there are differences. People from the North just came to this country and are more ready to do silly things, from money laundering to planting grasses.” Anh Tuan said.
The waiter brought us bowls of Quảng noodle. They were big, but not that big as the one I ate in Bankstown a few days ago.
“Living too long under Communism they tend to be feared of nothing. They rushed their life to even illegal things with short termist view about life and the country that welcomed them.” Anh Hung said.
“We here from the South have gone through different regimes and the war, we know what is right and wrong and appreciate better the hospitality of Australia.” Anh Tuan added.
We went on to speak about Vietnam, the election for the leaders of the democratic Vietnam (http://baucudanchulink.wordpress.com) and Livenguide, its purpose and development so far.
Anh Hung and anh Tuan are both from Soc Trang, where I was born. They were students to my father nearly 50 years ago when he was beginning his teaching career in a high school in South of Vietnam before being an military officer. What amazed me is that they can now remember and speak about their teacher so well after so many years. Maybe because the students and the teacher of those times were connected not only by years in high school but also as comrades and friends in the war and even in the re-education camps that pushed up like mushrooms after that. And when these student left Vietnam to live in free countries like the US or Australia, they did not forget their teacher. They sent us things from abroad, those that help the family going through the difficult years after 1975 as described in a song of Viet Dzung Gui ve Cho Em…, that I can never thank you enough.
The love and mutual duty connecting my father as teacher and his students are so deep after so many years. I thank my father so much for giving me the chance to be so nicely treated by his students wherever I go to in this world. I am asking myself how in 50 years my children would see my friends in another country during their journey into life.
What shall I leave to my children in 50 more years?
We said goodbye, hoped each other the best and promised to meet again soon, in Australia, Europe or Vietnam.
“So where do you go now?” Anh Hung asked me.
“To Marrickville” I replied. It was so sunny outside and the sky was so blue.