To appreciate the culture, you must understand the food. To appreciate the food, you must understand the culture.
The red in the Vietnamese flag represents the blood of the people. The yellow is for the color of their skin. The five-pointed star is for the five classes of society – workers, peasants, soldiers, intellectuals, and traders. Even though the history of Vietnam can be traced back thousands of years, Vietnam had been under the occupation of the Chinese, Japanese, and French. Having not gained independence until 1976, Vietnam is actually a very young country. This long arduous path to independence also helps explain why the country is as proud as it is.
Vietnamese currency, called dong, is made of either cotton fiber or plastic polymer. The paper banknotes (1000, 5000, 10,000) are the smaller currencies, whereas the plastic polymer banknotes range from 20,000 to 500,000 dong. At the time of writing this, 500,000 dong equals about 22 USD.
To you they’re just beautiful
To me they’re food
To me they’re home
To me they’re essential
To you they’re just a pictureTo me they’re history
To me they’re your job
They gave me callouses
They gave me death
But only they wept
The rain feeds them
And breaks for the birds to sing
Allow them to inspire you
To open your mind
To learn To teach.
In Vietnam, when someone dies, they are temporarily buried for a period of three years, at which point the bones are collected and moved to a permanent burial location. Since land, specifically burial plots, are so expensive, and the bones of the deceased need to be moved anyway, the locals have opted to temporarily bury the deceased in the rice fields. During this time, the fish help clean off the bones for when the body relocated. The fish in Ninh Binh, where i discovered this practice, are the most delicious fish I think I’ve ever had.. and now
I Know Why.
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