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Cho Moi, The Mekong
Letter #1: March 8, 2002
by Beth Buffam

Mekong Mother
This Mekong mother's daily routine involves pleany of rowing.

Dear Friends,

This will be quick as the computer in Long Xuyen, the "big city" near to Cho Moi times out fast. But the Lonely Planet didn't mention an internet here so I'm lucky. This has been a week spent living on one street in Cho Moi along the river where everything happens and everyone knows about it.

We saw a little old man being carried down the road, and realized it was a relative of Nhut's who had just died. There are open houses of Brother 4 and Brother 9 and 7 (or is it 8 near to Ni's home?), kids and grandkids walk in and out of all the homes. I've had and gotten over the runs, thanks to Nhut's Chinese medicine.

I've learned 7 words for "boat"! The accent to me sounds like they're talking with a mouthful of marbles and jello, and lots of words get a free "a" added, as in Viet Nam-a! But lots of people are very patient and speak slowly to me and it's beginning to occasionally make sense. We went to visit Nhut's 3 beautiful strong sisters -- one looks just like him. All the older women here are involved in life and strong and beautiful.

My best to you.

Love, Anne

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