Mountains and Colors

Read all the exciting things our scholars have been up to!

This past weekend, my group went on a beautiful journey into the northern region of Vietnam. How north you might ask? Well, at one point we were standing at the border with China. That north. It felt almost like I was home looking across the St. Lawrence into Canada, except the river in between was much smaller.

On our four day adventure, we covered a lot of ground. Starting in Hanoi on Thursday morning, we took off for what would be a long but gorgeous bus ride. Bus rides have turned into the best time for me to reflect on my experiences. Looking out the window with Fleet Foxes playing in my headphones, I am grateful once again for this incredible experience.

My favorite day out of our trip was trekking in Mù Cang Chải, which is what I will highlight in the photos below. Words cannot explain how beautiful this place is, so I’ll leave this one up to images for the most part!

Little pig greets us with funny sounds. He has a nice view from where he lives.

In many of the houses we visited, you could see corn on the ceiling where it is being dried for further use later on.

In this area is a large population of Hmong people. Traditional Hmong clothing is very colorful and intricately designed with mostly embroidered patterns. This woman is washing cloth after she has died it many times to get a dark indigo shade.

The cloth you see here has already been through the process of dying many times. This will most likely be used for making an outfit similar to what the woman is wearing in the previous photo.

This building is probably one used to store rice rather than a place for a family to stay. Rows of rice terraces can be seen behind, as well as a few other storage buildings.

A woman looks out from her home as her blurry dog scurries off. We were happy to see so many cute pups along our journey.

“Đẹp quá!” So beautiful!

Hats play an important role in Hmong life to mostly keep them warm in the cold winters, but they also play a significant cultural role. For babies and toddlers, the design of the hat can signify the gender of the person. There are also different meaning for different patterns, coins, and colors.

Rows and rows of terraced rice paddies.

It never gets old. Exploring the details of Vietnam has been beautiful, emotional, and eye-opening. I hope that these photos could give you a small glimpse into what I had the opportunity to experience this weekend. Thank you for reading/looking at the photos! Until next time. :)