Food, family, and more food.

My aunt (Di Phuong) and I took the city bus into Central Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) to visit An Dong Market. An Dong Market is a huge indoor market with huge selection of clothing, fabric, food and other goods.

I’ve been so fortunate to spend the last couple of days with my cousin, Long in the small town of Quang Bien. Quang Bien is where my family lived after the end of the Vietnam war. All of my siblings were raised in this small town, where they were shouting distance from cousins, uncles, aunts, and my grandparents. There’s something extremely unique about sharing a space and time with strangers whom I can call family. I’ve find over and over again, that the mutual eagerness to learn about our different lives seem to often end with satisfaction over the many more commonalities we share. Long shared with me his favorite spots for food- starting our time together with a warm bowl of Pho, and ending it with a savory bowl of Bun Bo Hue. I shared with Long some of my favorite American music (with the hopes of helping him move on from the Backstreet Boys he was listening to): The Head & The Heart, Jack Johnson, and Blind Pilots. We were quick to share our love for pool. He claims he hasn’t played pool in years- but still kicked my butt.

This is my family’s old property- just seconds away from where Long and my uncle currently lives. This is where all of my siblings grew up before relocating to Portland. The house itself was recently added by the current owners, but the pig pen remains intack. The people who currently live here were very friendly and did not hesitate to let me roam their home for pictures.

I stumbled into the village market place during my morning run- where I had no choice but to get extremely touristy.

Food, family, and more food.