Content warning: In this post, I talk about colonialism, war and intergenerational trauma. 

I’m not going to lie. The longer I stay in Vietnam, the harder it is to articulate how I’m feeling. I have barely scratched the surface here but I have felt the warmth, generosity, and optimism across many segments of society. I am amazed by the country and culture but nothing can compare to the people I’ve met.

I spoke to many folks out here and had many rich conversations but some of the most profound moments have been my time with the youth and the elders. Last month I had the good fortune of meeting OG revolutionaries* in Hà Nội (the capitol in the North) and a group of 6th graders in Nhà Bè (a working class southern district in Hồ Chí Minh City). They were truly inspiring and grew my soul.

Before I continue, there are some obvious but not so obvious things to say….