It’s Tet. Last night we saw fireworks exploding over the city of Long Xuyen. They made me think of baseball games and summertime in the midwest. But it was in the Mekong Delta. The streets were packed last night with everyone dressed up in their best and the traffic was simply horrible. Now there just isn’t much to do. I slept in today and Jon and I have been invited to a few places during the first few days of Tet. Last evening we were invited over to a teacher’s house here in Long Xuyen for dinner. She had studied her masters at Bluffton when I was a student, and so she and Jon and I could talk about the town and some people that we knew. The past two lunar new years she had been in America and she said to us: “I know how it feels to be far away from home during the holidays.” When we were at her house I had my first taste of the traditional sticky rice and bean cake. It was really good and very filling. After I ate some of it I wasn’t all that hungry anymore. But we ended dinner and then Jon and I went off to a few other appointments for the evening. The last one was at the administration building on campus A. Dr. Xuan was there and some other very important people. Eventually some people started singing karaoke in Vietnamese (Jon did very well) but that stopped when the fireworks show started halfway across the city. We watched it from campus A and then it was time to head back to the guest house and go to bed.
Today there are few people out on the streets as most people spend time with their family. So, to everyone out there, happy lunar new year.