Facets: Meet Peter. He lived in The Philippines for a bit to learn English.

Submitted 6 months ago
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Worth Knowing

Meet Peter. He lived in The Philippines for a bit to learn English.  

Peter was born in Saigon, Vietnam. His mother adopted him when he was 3 days old. His mother adopted his sister when she was 7 or 8. Peter's never met his mother or father. He's pretty sure his father was European since he is Eurasian. The other kids teased him and poked fun at him because he didn't look like them. It bothered him then. 

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When Peter was 22, he left Vietnam with his mother to emigrate to the U.S. His sister didn't come because she had married and had a baby. Peter and his mother stopped in Batan in The Philippines for 6 months so they could learn a little English and about American culture. It was not uncommon for people emigrating like this to try to get a leg up by learning some basics about the language and the culture. And doing it in The Philippines was more affordable than most other places. 

Peter and his mother eventually arrived in Boston. He still didn't have a basic grasp of the English language at that point. Starting out was tough. But Peter and his mother worked hard. They did all kinds of different things to make ends meet. She died a few year ago leaving him with no family close by. He misses his sister a lot. 

Peter lives in Lebanon. He's been in the U.S. for 27 years. This is the third "summer" he's worked for a nail salon in West Lebanon. He gives manicures and pedicures almost all day long. That's okay because he's saving up money to visit his sister when the summer is over. But then he'll come back. Peter is 49.

Best Vietnamese food in the Upper Valley: go to Boston

What he misses most about Vietnam: his sister

You’re reading Facets, a blog that features brief portraits of the people and the places that collectively comprise the Upper Valley. Each one of these people and places is a facet of the Upper Valley. If you'd like to read about more facets, subscribe here. Did you miss yesterday's Facet? Or do you want to see other Facets? Come visit the Facets Profile Page.


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