Monday, April 27, 2009

Province Mottos

(PICTURE: Vietnam's 58 Provinces)

In America each of the fifty states has its own motto. Here's the mottos for the three states I have lived in:

New Jersey – Liberty and Prosperity

New York - Excelsior (Meaning "Ever Upward")

California - Eureka (Meaning "I have found it")

Each state also has a nickname:

New Jersey - The Garden State

New York - The Empire State

California - The Golden State

In Vietnam they sort of have the same thing with all of their provinces. There are 58 provinces here and each one is “famous” for something. Huyen was telling me recently about a few famous provincial reputations. For example:

Hai Phong: Hai Phong is known to have the prettiest women in Vietnam...who are also the meanest women in Vietnam.

Ha Tinh: Ha Tinh province is known to be the poorest and cheapest province in Vietnam. Apparently their reputation is that they are so poor they carve fish out of wood, dip the wooden fish into sauce and suck off the sauce.

Ha Nam: Ha Nam is Huyen's province. Huyen told me her province is famous for their “Farting Bridge.” Back in the old days (maybe 20 years ago) nobody had toilets near their house so everyone would go to a bridge and drop a deuce off the side. Anyone who walked by the bridge (hopefully not under) would hear fart noises. She said there is another famous saying about her province: “There was a boy who was carrying twelve sweet potatoes. After he walked by the bridge he had thirteen.”