April 16: Went on a motorcycle ride with Thu Ba’s husband to take photos of the local people and their homes. It’s a very hard life for the people here. The land was mostly rocks. The women worked in the fields while their children playing nearby. Their hoes made cracking noises as they hit rocks instead of soft earth. The women make use of every bit or soil to grow something. With bits of ground as small as the size of my hand, they plant corns and other vegetables.
I was told by an official that in spite of how hard they work, they barely had enough to eat. Ha Giang province is also the poorest in Vietnam. The children also work very hard. Boys and girls, as young as 8 years old, daily cut and carry large bundle of vegetation to feed their cow.
We spotted some children on the edge of the mountain. At first, I thought there were 4 of them, but as we stopped the motorbike and got off to say hello to them, I realized there were 9 children as the 4 I saw each had a little sibling strapped on their back. The 9nth child was so small. His clothes and face were covered with dust, he blended in the rocks behind him perfectly.
The little girl, only 5 years old carried her sleeping little sister as if she had a doll on her back.
While the women working hard breaking the rocks to plant corns, and the children caring for their siblings, a drunk man staggered on the other side of the road.
In spite of their hard work and hard life, the women take great pride in themselves and dress so beautiful in their bright colorful costumes. Every one I saw wear some kind of jewelry.... Their beauty, their strength and their way of dressing themselves inspired me!!! These women humbled me greatly.