On the WWW trip to Ho Chi Minh, we stayed in this beautiful house on the river in the Mekong Delta for 3 days. It was a refreshing experience that gave me a newfound appreciation and respect for the “simple life.”
Living Simply in the Mekong Delta
Dawn breaks with the whir of the river boats and the rooster’s morning call, I open my eyes and, not wanting to use the outdoor restrooms, try to stall. The bright green leaves and breezy air strongly contrast,
with the lizard infested shanties that never fail to leave me aghast.
In the 21st century, where we have cellphones, artificial hearts, and indoor plumbing,
why are some places in the world forced to suffer from problems so numbing
like pollution, corruption, poverty, and disease?
I am astounded by how the people of Vinh Long live so simply with such ease.
However, their lives are also filled with joy and beauty.
They are one with nature, humble and focused on their duty.
The river is their everything,
it’s where they work, live, play, bathe, eat, learn, and sing.
Floating in a boat down the river, I was able to see:
a little girl bathing, having fun and carefree
a young man navigating a flatboat of his sole source of income, wheat, to the marketplace,
a mother washing dishes and ignoring us tourists who were invading her personal space.
I got to see a glimpse of their lives from inside a boat,
and although I don’t know much I can connote
that the Vietnamese culture is one of hard work, strong families, and good food.
I have learned from them that the best life is one lived simply off the Earth’s riches, such as seafood.
Poem by Sree Yeluri