In partnership with the Maine Memory Network Maine Memory Network

Presque Isle: The Star City

Moving to Maine: There to Here

(Page 3 of 3) Print Version 

Other than shoes, there were a lot of things that my parents did not have, like an indoor toilet. My parents used an outhouse in Vietnam. When my mother and father were young, their houses were made of wood and had a thatched roof. My grandmother cooked on a fire pit and got water from a well. My parents raised chickens for money and for meat. They kept them in the house; free to wander where they wanted.
Since Vietnam didn’t have ambulances, if someone were to have an emergency and needed medical attention, the injured person had to ride on someone’s back. That person would run to the nearest hospital. Or someone would leave the injured person, quickly bike to a hospital, bring back a doctor, and they person would quickly ride back. If one had money, you could buy and ride a motorcycle to the hospital.
When my mother wasn’t working, she enjoyed riding the buffalos she tended. She liked to pick flowers in a local field, and watch the clouds go by. Growing up, my mother didn’t have a TV or toys. She grew up poor and moved to seek a new life in the United States of America.