While these are feelings about home, I wanna write in English. This is the answer to the questions my international friends brought up – What’s so good about Vietnam.

It’s all about memory. If you see something familiar again, it feels good. Taste. Smell. Touch. Sound. Image.

Taste is the first thing that reminds people of their home. For me, it is my Mom’s food. While sometimes my dad cooks better, I only miss Mom’s food. It is because she spends so much time and love on it. While Dad shows his love for us by teaching us, Mom shows his love by feeding us. Every time I study abroad, I know Mom is going to pack something I like. Every time I come back, I know Mom is going to cook some dishes I like. I’ve tasted different kinds of food, and enjoyed much of them, but nothing is as good as Mom’s cooking. It is hard to tell which dish I like best. Usually I’ll just tell her to cook anything she wants, because I like everything she cooks. Not until I left home for university that I felt it this way.

But taste also brings me back to Singapore, the place I spent 3 years of my university life. It was Thai’s Tom Yam. It was Hainanese Chicken. It was the Hor fun I sometimes got from my humorous mate downstair in the hawker center. It was the roasted pork that I awfully hated, but usually bought to avoid queuing.

In Vietnam countryside people sometimes burn the rice plant after harvest. It may be used for either heating or fertilizing. I remember the day when I was little. I went to the pig house of my grandpa, used a stick to poke the little ones while they were squeezing their mom’s milk. The burning smell was exactly what I have in mind.

Another burning smell welcomed us once we arrived in India. It generalizes to the smell of countryside for me. But in India we encountered a nicer smell. It was in the forest during our sightseeing. The plant’s leaves were used for seasoning.

But the idea to write this article was from a sound. Generally I hate noises. The day before leaving, there was a gathering, and I was half asleep when I heard my aunt chatting. It’s not just any noise. It’s my aunt’s voice, while irritating, but familiar. Her voice made me feel good, especially when I’m leaving the day after. I can recall exactly every single voice of my family members in my head, and each time I do so, it feels good.

I also like the noise we hear on trains. It’s the kind of recurring voice that bring you gradually into sleep. Well, that’s why I like to travel by trains.

I don’t have much memory in touching. Seems like my fingers have all been spoiled by the keyboard day after day. Oh, now I remember my fingers touching my guitar strings. It’s usually hold against my chest. My heart, my ears, my mouth can feel it. Beat bop beat bop… Couldn’t bring it to US though :(.

And seeing as well. As you have to pay attention using your eyes almost every moment, it’s not easy for an image to stay long enough to enter deep into your memory. I remember the river with flows and leaves that my Dad used to watch every afternoon. I and my younger brother, we can run around to play, or just stayed there with him to watch the river. I don’t even remember why we stood there (rather silly), but the image was just there in my head. I remember my girlfriend’s face when she closes her mouth and point her lips forward. It’s also silly, but the image stays there in my head.

And somehow I feel good about all these.

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