Vietnam Time

5/13/2019 7:54:24 AM

Viet’s home on French – Belgian border

VNF - In a peaceful countryside in France, there is a house that is always open to Vietnamese students coming to seek affection and home culture.

Vietnamese girls at year-end party at Lan Bui's house

In Quarouble town, Nord province, bordering French – Belgian, a year-end day. In the kitchen of the dentist couple Vietnamese origin - Lan Bui, the smell of food spread throughout the room. Young girls are busy cooking, preparing food for the party to welcome fellow countrymen from the US and Vietnam to visit. The menu includes Vietnamese dishes such as spring rolls, coconut salad. Face flushed with the heat from the stove, Le My Huyen Trang (born in 1994) smiles sweetly and look forward to see how everyone will judge her food.

Hometown in Phu Tho province, Trang came to France in 2013. She attended the Hauts-de-France Polytechnic University and stayed in the house of Lan Bui family, who left the magnificent Paris capital many years ago to settle in the quiet and peaceful countryside of northern France.

2 years after arriving in France, Trang learned about the Vietnamese dentist couple through a friend who introduced her to the dental clinic. At that time, she was also looking for an internship in accounting, and was asked to practice at Mr. Lan's dental office for about 2 months. The dentist and wife also provide her free accommodation during this time. When she finished her training, Trang decided to stay with other friends.

‘’At first, it felf really strange because in Vietnam I’ve never shared a house with anyone besides my parents.’’, Trang said.

“As time went by, being treated like a daughter, I feel like here as my family. I learned many things, from cooking to behaviors.’’

Similarly, Nguyen Thuy Hang (born in 1994) who is living in Lan Bui’s house with Trang, said

“Surprisingly, I found the feeling of a real family in France’’.

Hang said in Vietnam she did not live with her parents who were busy with business. From a young age, Hang only lived with a nanny in Ha Long before moving to Hanoi at the age of 10.

Hang said since a child, she only lived with her nanny, grandmother and aunt so feeling of a family in her is quite faint. It is not until she arrived in France, her feeling is changed. Living with Lan Bui couple, she knows many dishes of the South.

Every time someone comes from Vietnam to visit, the whole family will enjoy green vegetables with the flavor of hometown or boiled meat wrapped in Trang Bang cake. Besides, the students at the family also have the opportunity to practice French in a comfortable and friendly environment.

When having free time, the students help Trang Bui, Lan Bui’s wife, wrap wool which is taken for free from factories, into small rolls, then put them in a glass box in the living room for charity. Lan Bui family and a former French established a charity in 2009. They sponsor many poor and orphaned children who are being raised in some private homes or pagodas, Catholic churches in Ho Chi Minh City. They also built houses of love, delivered gifts, books and bicycles to poor children in the Mekong Delta.

Dentist Lan Bui shared that he and his wife had an idea to welcome Vietnamese students after their daughter were received by a Vietnamese-American family during her study in California. Mr. Lan also expressed his hope that this action will spread into a movement everywhere to help the younger generation of Vietnamese people have better conditions and feel warmer when studying in foreign countries.

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