Today as a group we volunteered this morning at the SOS Village for children who suffer from the effects of Agent Orange. In the classroom all of us were instantly greeted with hugs, waves, smiles, and in Justin’s case, a request to dance. Before I was even in the room for ten minutes, a small girl with a Disney princess shirt lept into my arms. Amused with my blonde braids, the girl who suffered from Downs syndrome repeated the word “princess” in Vietnamese over and over again. Convinced I was Elsa from “Frozen,” the girl had me sing “Let it Go” with her countless times. My heart is/was utterly and completely warmed by the seemingly instantaneous love that this real life princess had for all of us. After a very detailed portrait of Devon, Julian, and I was scribbled by the future Picasso of a little girl, it was time for the kids to go home. With a big hug and kiss on the forehead from my new friend, I said my goodbyes and was left with a memory I know will never be lost.
In the afternoon, we all visited the Thang Long University English club. Eager to engage in English with us, they devised an afternoon of fun activities with us including a huge treasure hunt where we had to go all over an area of campus to find answers, dance the bamboo dance, play games and generally be ourselves in fun and silly ways with them. What a great group of university students! Their English was quite good and their enthusiasm for our visit was overwhelmingly positive.