LOVE FOR HUE
Talking about Central Vietnam, people frequently focus on the sun, the wind as well as the dry and harsh nature. Nevertheless, in such a severe condition, a romantic and poetic land was born. It is the charming and dreamy Hue Imperial City.
Hue and Vi Dam folklore songs
Hue by chance becomes the symbol of continuous rains, but not the winds from Lao or blazing hot summer noon. In some aspects, rains in Hue represent “the Hue’s soul” and a bridge connecting sad and happy memories, love and desire of Hue people who live far away from their homeland. A native of Hue wrote: “What upsets Hue so much that Hue makes the rains spreading the whole sky of Thua Thien?” Who has ever lived in Hue in rainy days always leave this land bringing with him the feelings in nonstop rains. Van Cong Toan, a journalist cum poet used to say: “One will never love Hue if he does not have his hair wet in the rain of this land.” Also, no one knows when Vi Dam folklore singing became a spiritual food like the mother’s breast milk nourishing Hue people and sowing in their soul a deep love for Hue accompanying them on every journey they take.
It was not an accidental reason that made Nguyen Kings choose Hue as Imperial Capital for a long lasting dynasty in history. Hue was considered the land with a terrain of “rolling dragon and sitting tiger”, where the people of several past generations had spent peaceful life. As a result, up to now, royal tombs and palaces are special features of Hue.
Capital City (Kinh Thanh) is one citadel in Complex of Hue Monuments earned it a place in UNESCO's World Heritage Sites in 1993. In addition, Hue was once again honored in 2003 when Hue Royal Court Music was recognized as World Oral History Treasure and Intangible Culture by UNESCO.
Hue in the line of real and spiritual worlds
Coming to Hue, you must spend a day slowly wandering around the citadel to see by your eyes the vestiges of a golden past and to feel the Vietnamese traditional cultures throughout the rise and fall of history. Setting foot on the royal tombs and palaces in the sunset and accidentally hearing the echo of pagoda bell from far away would probably make travelers hesitant and not able to leave. At that time, man and nature seems to be blending into each other, and the line between the real and spiritual worlds almost disappears.
Visiting the former capital, travelers should not miss a sightseeing tour to the system of majestic royal tombs in Hue. The final resting places of the Nguyen Kings convey each King's point of view, personalities and tastes. The tomb of Gia Long is imposing and located in a solitary pine forest while Tu Duc Tomb is famous for the romantic scenery reflecting the profound knowledge and romance of the King’s characteristics. On the other hand, Khai Dinh Tomb is elaborate and is the result of the interminglement of Eastern and Western architectural trends.
In the boundless space of sunset on Huong River, let your soul floating, release all sorrow and grief and experience the peace in the flow of life. Huong River is like a stream of mild silk connecting the heritage treasures of the Nguyen Kings. It is also the spiritual soul of Hue people with a beauty challenging the time. Traveling along Huong River is traveling through the history of Hue. The beauty of sadness and quietness of this river has become the source of inspiration for numbers of renowned poetic masterpieces as the evidences of Hue spiritual beauty.
Courteous communication of Hue people
Thu Bon, a famous poet of Vietnam, featured the characteristics of Hue people in his verses:
“What is special in the voice of Hue that makes me hear the rhythm of rain in the sound of sun?”
Is it true that because Hue people were born and grown up in the land rich in cultures, they gain gentle characteristics? The Hue tones are soft and tender. Hue young ladies answer “Yes” in such sweet voice that allures so many hearts. Once coming to Hue, you would probably fall in love with that voice. Life might change, but Hue people will never change their unique native voice although they live far away from their homeland.
Hue people always maintain and respect the family traditions and regulations. Their life style is influenced by the feudal dynasties since Hue used to be the capital of Dang Trong (Vietnamese southwards expansion, now Southern and Central Vietnam) for more than 300 years and then the capital of the last dynasty in Vietnam (Nguyen Dynasty) for more than 140 years. Hue people Hue people treasure highly the role of their family and consider their family above anything else. Influenced by this fact, although Hue is among the biggest cities of Vietnam, the lifestyle here is very peaceful and completely different from the life in Danang which is only 100 km far from Hue. There is no bustling industrial park in Hue, so Hue people still enjoys a smooth, tender and secretive life through several generations.
Saying goodbye to the dreamlike purple Ao Dai flowing in the wind, I still keep in my heart the whole sweet feelings of the first day I arrived in Hue. Despite the change of life, to me as well as to millions of travelers, Hue is always the most graceful, peaceful and tender place. Closing my trip with unforgettable memories of listening to Hue folk songs while floating up and down Huong River in late afternoons, I wish for chance of coming back to Hue once being tired and needing a quiet place to refresh myself before starting a new journey in life.
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