Saturday, June 23, 2007

Poignant Moments in Vietnam

These are the moments which we cherish, in our beloved Vietnam.... sharing the warmth of hugs, the joy of play, and supporting the quest for significant sites where Bruce served as a young soldier. Vietnam changed his life some forty years ago and again when we returned in 2006 and 2007.

Now we visit a country vibrant with new hope and industry, deep, rich cultural and religious traditions and warm and welcoming people.
However centuries of conflict in Vietnam, have left a legacy of poverty and disease, with Agent Orange embedded in the soil and the gene pool. The rate of birth defects is extremely high and unexploded ordnance has claimed the limbs of many curious children. Leprosy still exists ( see the side bar for a link to leprosy bandage blog to learn more about this disease and the bandages that are so urgently needed.)

The extent of the need, the extreme poverty and the painful legacy of Agent Orange seem not to daunt these resilient people. Their smiles bely the circumstances in which we could not imagine ourselves living.
We hope to share the bounty and blessiings of our lives with them.

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