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The real mysteries of life and all of existence were unfolding before me. An awareness of reality in the full sense of becoming part of my life.The whole society of Viet Nam was not a word anymore to me. Before it was a place, that had a war going on and that was the limit of my real conception.Looking back it was very narrow and limited in it's scope. I myself seemed very limited in my knowledge of everything. Here in Viet Nam there were people just like myself. They were not some alien being from some other planet. They walked the same earth as me. They breathed the same air. We all had the same body structure and made from the same substance. There was only that difference of physical structure and appearance that made everyone different.
They were mostly of the peasant stock, that lived in poverty and squalor all their lives. Some even lived in grass huts, like the one's that you saw on the true adventure series on television. Here in Viet Nam it was the reality and truth of life. There was no romantic illusion surrounding these people. They were helpless in many ways and lacked many of the modern conveniences of the Western world. There were no streets or cars. There were no billboards and advertisements. There were no modern kitchen appliances and stoves, or washing machines. They were of a raw heritage and being. They led a simple life, that dictated the basic necessities of life. They were of flesh and blood, which made it all that more real to me.
They revolved with the sun. Sleeping in the night and rising with the sun. By each house there was a small bunker that was built, in which the family could take refuge. Enemy fire or our fire at times would rake the homes of these people. Many times in the middle of the night they were awaken to the shattering of bullets flying over their heads. You could see them running or crawling for that hole within the ground. That place of refuge that afforded them safety at times from the war. They lived in the fear of there lives and health. Children, women and the men, all living in that state of reality, that an artillery shell might hit my home and kill me and the rest of my family. What other thoughts could run through the mind of that person.Captured in the war that destroyed and ravaged all the reality, that was ever known to them.
In most families relatives and family would live together, to help work the rice paddy and survive. At times all would be gathered around a hutch squatting and talking. Squatting was a very popular pose of seeing a Vietnamese reposed in.They seemed to have a genius for utilizing this posture. They seemed to be resting,while working in that position. They worked away time, but time seemed unknown to them in patience.