Vietnamese Roommates, Food and War Museums

Written by Sarah McPhillips (Clark University), Student Correspondent

The first two weeks in Vietnam are almost over! Time here is already flying and we’ve barely begun! There are only three of us in this semester’s CET Vietnam program. There is me, Sarah from Massachusetts, Olivia from Maine, and Catherine from Texas. Although there are only three of us, I think we all feel very lucky because we’re all very close and get along great!

Along with the three of us in the program, we each have a Vietnamese roommate. My roommate’s name is Linh (see picture below.. that’s me and Linh! ) Linh goes to school at a university in the area and is always having me try local fruits and candies that she brings home. Having a Vietnamese roommate is great, they have all been so welcoming and eager to take us out and help us to get out and experience life like the Vietnamese! The picture below is from dinner a few nights ago when the roommates took us to a restaurant where we sat on the ground and ate some local food.

Vietnam, roommate

Monday Catherine, Olivia and I went to the American War Remnants Museum, or as we know it at home the Vietnam War. Seeing this museum was a really rewarding and educational experience. As anything goes, there is more than one side to everything. Seeing this museum showed the Vietnamese perspective of the war that you can’t easily find at home. The content, photos and displays were extremely heavy, and it was hard to not get emotional for the inhumanity that was displayed during this war. This museum also showcased the suffering that many Vietnamese are still experiencing from this war due to the ongoing affects of Agent Orange. It was extremely tragic. I’m extremely grateful for the experience of seeing this museum, and I’m also extremely grateful for the forgiving nature of the Vietnamese that seems to be deeply rooted within their culture.