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|Edward Luby has been living in Vietnam for almost 3 years (Photo courtesy of Edward Luby)|
“I have total faith in the Vietnamese government”, the England teacher who’s been living and working in Vietnam for almost three years said. “I feel Vietnam is the best in the world for Covid-19 prevention. People follow rules and the government give updates regularly. I’m very lucky to be here”.
Vietnam had earlier successfully put the novel virus under control, twice. On January 28 morning, two cases were reported in Quang Ninh and Hai Duong after 55 consecutive days of no local transmission. Dozens of new infections confirmed every day. Within 9 days, the nation’s community infections tally hits 394 cases, 12 provinces and cities affected.
Edward said he was positive about the situation in Vietnam. “They did a good job in containing the virus in Hai Duong. But this is a new virus that even experts don’t know the full extent of. So only time will tell. But life must go on I think”.
From Hanoi, Edward’s constantly in contact with his family and friends in England and is told how bad the pandemic is in his home country.
“1500-2000 people are dying daily there. Compared to Vietnam, 35 deaths in total, it’s awful”, he was quoted as saying.
The sudden recurrence of the novel coronavirus in the weeks leading to Tet (Lunar New Year) has, to some extent, disrupted people’s lives and plans for the biggest holiday. For Edward, he’s been off work one week earlier than scheduled as schools are closed. His gym is also closed. The teacher has been on walks and watching movies at home to kill time.
He has earlier booked flight ticket to Nha Trang for Tet holiday but is having second thoughts over coronavirus fear.
“I love to spend Tet in the sun and on a beach. But I’ve been invited over to a friend’s home in Tuyen Quang, so maybe I’ll go there if my flight is canceled”, Edward said, adding that he would definitely follow anti-pandemic rules and put on mask when outside.
|(Photo courtesy of Edward Luby)|
After almost 5 years teaching English in Southeast Asia, in May 2018, Edward decided to live in Vietnam as he had fallen in love with the Vietnamese culture. He has welcomed two Tets in Vietnam and was struck by the traditional dishes, especially Chung cake (glutinous rice cake), the way Vietnamese people enjoy themselves while singing, dancing, wining.
“In England, the government stops all things like fireworks and street parties. Everything is too much health and safety”, he said. “Vietnamese people seem to celebrate New Year’s in a fun and friendly way”.
|Edward making Chung cake with his kindergarten students in Bee Garden Kindergarten, Duong Noi, Ha Dong (Photo courtesy of Edward Luby)|
|(Photo courtesy of Edward Luby)|
The blossoms, kumquat trees, the sight of Vietnamese women in Ao Dai, the happiness on everyone’s faces, etc., also leave a great impression on the expat. He even makes and tries Chung cake with his kindergarten students and local people at school, giving li xi (lucky money) to his colleagues, just like the locals do.
“I really like the tradition. I normally change VND 1 million into VND 10,000 and give to children during Tet. Last year I received about VND 2 million in total”, he smiled.
|He is working as an English teacher at Bee Garden Kindergarten (Photo courtesy of Edward Luby)|
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