The handsome Westerner grinds fish sauce and speaks fluently in the North, Central, and South accents

Childhood and memories of Vietnam

Hello, I’m Luan Vu.”

On the evening of July 7 during the livestream nearly 1 hour long on the TikTok channel, Luan Vu continuously speaks Vietnamese with a Southern accent to everyone. In some cases, he can also speak with a Northern and Central accent.

American guy admitted that after living in Ho Chi Minh City for more than 10 years, he only used English when teaching the rest of the students spoke Vietnamese.

In a small house in District 3, Ho Chi Minh City, he masterfully cooks Vietnamese dishes, from fried spring rolls with sour soup with braised meat to steamed scad rolls. Central-style rice paper.

“I eat Vietnamese food every day of the week,” Luan said. He also rarely calls himself Joshua Ryan, wanting people to know him better by the name Tran Luan Vu, which his adoptive mother, a Vietnamese living in the US, gave him.

Tran is the surname of his mother and Luan. Vu is the reverse reading of the name of his favorite Cai Luong artist. However, to make it easier for foreigners to pronounce, he wants them to call him Luan.

Love for Vietnam has been engraved in his heart since he was a 10-year-old child in Oregon, USA. He was born in family Portuguese-American.

“My mother gave birth to me when she was 15 years old. At that age, she really didn’t know how to become a mother. Parents often quarrel and cannot take care of their three children. I had to eat so much instant noodles that I ended up in the hospital,” Luan recalled.

The city of Portland where he lives has many Asians. Luan’s class has up to 50% Vietnamese students, and he also quickly became friends with them.

At the age of 14, Luan asked job more in the school’s theater costume sewing factory, he meets a woman of Vietnamese origin Hue. She also has a daughter about the same age as Luan.

He remembers the first time he went to her house, she made him fried chicken wings with fish sauce and tapioca cake, which made him say “delicious”. She often listened to Cai Luong introduce him to some Vietnamese literary works and taught him how to cook.

“She was gentle and full of affection. For the first time in my life, I felt the warm care of a mother. She was also the first adult to actually take the time to listen to everything I had to share,” he said.

In the summer of 2012, when arriving at Tan Son Nhat airport, those thoughts were quickly erased. He felt the warm friendliness of everyone, they always had a smile on their lips.

A few friends invited him to the West where there were vast fields. Together they raise ducks to catch fish… to entertain guests. Life is difficult but people are always generous and kind. Luan said that was the first time he learned that money is not the only thing that creates human happiness.

He decided to stay in Vietnam. Luan’s family expressed their displeasure but still accepted. receive. So instead of travel In 3 months, he has been in Vietnam for nearly 11 years.

In Ho Chi Minh City, Luan experienced many jobs such as MC, model, English teacher. In 2018, Luan decided to do business and rent space in District 4. However, the person who did the transaction with Luan was not the landlord, he tricked him into signing a contract for more than 80 million VND.

The next day when Luan came to take over the house, he couldn’t open the door with the key the other person gave him. has also “run far away”. After that time, Luan felt disappointed and returned to America.

After nearly two years of living in America, he had a job but did not feel happy. “My childhood in America was very lonely, living in discrimination and violence. I moved out very early and had almost no connection with my family. Returning from Vietnam, I brought with me images of Vietnamese mothers. I spent almost my whole life taking care of my child. I suddenly wanted to reconcile with my biological mother and appreciate family values ​​more,” he said.

In 2020, he began to miss the rainy days in his hometown. In Ho Chi Minh City, he always visits empty cafes and listens to Bolero music; bustling atmosphere at sidewalk restaurants… Luan thinks Vietnam is always present inside him, so he decided to come back here again.

The Covid-19 epidemic is a difficult period for Luan. He had to “cover” the cost of renting the premises of the English center even though there were no students coming to class.

“Americans have a very high degree of independence and individualism. Families are mostly It was like he couldn’t help me during that time,” Luan said.

However, in the most difficult time, he received help from a friend in Quang Ninh. He sent Luan the money to cover the expenses and did not ask him for anything. At the same time, Vietnamese friends also continuously encouraged and asked about him.

“I feel the unconditional kindness of the Vietnamese people,” he said.

Currently, Luan are living a happy life in Vietnam. His lover is from Phu Yen. Occasionally the two would drive each other back to Tuy Hoa City to eat grilled corn in é leaves and lightly cooked fish and spring rolls…

“I have never regretted choosing Vietnam” Luan said happily.