Thursday, June 17, 2010

Bravery

How many of you gals have been to a nail salon run by women from Vietnam? I took girl #3 to have her first mani/pedi with me in celebration of her upcoming 7th birthday in July. She wanted green nail polish and flowers on her sweet fingers and toes. Precious. Her hands are painted "You're a Pisa Work" and her toes are green. Love it!
As the lady was painting my nails, I noticed that her license had her Vietnamese name on it and then "Tina" above it. It made me sad that she can't use her given name here. I started asking her long she had lived in Tampa. She said she's been here 11 years. Her parents are still in Vietnam. In 11 years, she has not gone home to Vietnam. It has been 11 years since she has laid eyes on her parents. Can you imagine? I tried to ask her if she was scared when she came here, and she became very quiet. I realized that I needed to quit asking questions. So, I sat back and began to think.
Here I was sitting across from her after just a year and a half here in Florida. I remember being nervous about moving just 3 states away. This woman left her continent and has spent 11 years without seeing her parents. THAT is bravery.

7 comments:

Love Being a Nonny said...

The young girl that does my pedicures Julie, is from Cambodia. She is in her twenties and has a daughter that is two years old. She has not seen her parents in three years. She says it is just too expensive. Tina is such a nice girl and works six days a week...twelve hour days. I admire her work ethic. We are so dagum spoiled.

Suburban Princess said...

Hi there! I sent you an email the other day - just want to make sure you got it :O)

Cool Gal said...

Yes, very brave, but sad too. Maybe she will one day get to go home or perhaps her parents will get to come visit.

Travelbugmom said...

Wow! What a COWARD I AM....I stopped going to a salon near me, since the technicians only speak in "their" language and I always felt bad when I would engage them in conversation! I go to a primarily AMERICAN salon now!

Susan said...

Amazingly enough I haven't seen my own mother in 11 years. The last time I saw her was when my 3rd son was born, she left two days later and I haven't seen her since. My son is now 11 years old. She has never seen my two younger children. I think it's very abnormal and sad that my children will never know their granmother, but I think she is the one that is missing out the most.
She doesn't live in another country and it's not a financial issue since I've offered to pay her way out here several times over. I've just given up now.

Southern Living: Preppy Style said...

You know, I've never thought of it that way, and you are 100% right, that is bravery. I know just the move from Ky to Florida 10 years ago was hard.
Love Tampa, I'll be there next weekend for a Junior League conference. If I had a chance to move to the west coast, I'd choose Tampa.

The Mrs. said...

Isn't it amazing what you learn about people when you ask! It's insane! Wow, she is a hero. Sad though!