An Amazing Spring Break!

Huong HoI would be the first to agree with the idea that the more you step out of your comfort zone, the more experiences you may accumulate. After a long week of hard work for the mid-term tests, I was excited to pack up and go to Kentucky to visit my friends in the U.S. whom I consider my third family!


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They have taken great care of me as well as helped me open my eyes and gain more knowledge about U.S. culture by getting me engaged in daily outdoor activities. They took me to Baptist churches to learn how Christians practice their religion. Even though Buddhism is my religious identity, I am open to learning about another religion to better understand a world that I have never had a chance to learn about. What became clear to me is that different religions have similar and distinct features, customs, and beliefs. However, the most important thing is that every single religion is dedicated to getting people together and teaching them how care for each other. It does not matter which religion you follow, you should always treat others the way you wish them to treat you in return! If you let religion have a negative impact, it may affect the conversation and relationships that you have been striving to build up with those whose religious and cultural backgrounds are different from your own.

Huong Ho 3One of the highlights of this trip was the pitch-perfect performance of an Irish band called Celtic Women. Their amazing and beautiful voices gave me goose bumps! It is actually hard to put into words how much I enjoyed the show.


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Another fantastic thing I got the chance to do was experience American family lifestyle. As I stayed with my friend and his wife, I have come to realize differences and similarities between Vietnamese and American families. Specifically, both Vietnamese and Americans value the importance of family. Nevertheless, a huge difference between Vietnamese and American people is the way they exercise this belief. It is a common practice for three or even four generations of a Vietnamese family to live under the same roof. Through regular family gatherings, they get to know each other very well and learn how to adjust to the inconvenience that a large family size may cause. American people, on the other hand, find it normal to split up and live in their own comfort zone. For example, my friend and his wife stayed in their own house, whereas my friend’s mother lives by herself.  However, just because they do not share the same living space with each other does not mean they do not love and care for each other! Family gatherings take place during special occasions and the weekends where the whole family laughs and has a lot of fun together.

– Huong Thi My Ho, Vietnam, Augustana College


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