April 04, 2012


A.    April has brought us bright sunshine that lasts all day. It feels great to be with you again here on Radio the Voice of Vietnam after our long holiday commemorating the death anniversary of the Hung Kings – the founders of the Vietnamese nation. This year’s celebration fell on Monday, which is the 10th day of the 3rd lunar month.

B.    Creating a three-day weekend! When I returned to the office after three days off, I saw a letter from Angola. It’s from Antonio Machado Segunda, who said he was proud to be a special listener of the Voice of Vietnam.

A.   Antonio said he wanted to take part in the contest “What do you know about Vietnam” but he couldn’t because his letter was delayed. What a pity, Antonio, but I hope you ‘ll take part next time, and in the mean time continue listening to our programs to learn more about Vietnam’s land and people.

B.    I think Antonio will, because he also said his big dream is to visit Vietnam.

C.   It’s great to hear that, Antonio. We‘re happy to know you love our country so much. April would be a fine month to visit. Festivals are going on in different parts of the country. The Central Highlands, for example.

A.   Yeah, the Central Highlands are very beautiful in the spring, with white pansies blooming along streams, and rivers. The villages in this region are now preparing for the spring holiday season, which will last until the dry season.

B.    For VN’s ethnic people, this is a relaxing time of year, with many leisurely activities to enjoy during the mid days and nights. The sounds of gong and drum echo through the forests and valleys inviting everyone to join in the festivities.

A.   Tourists from all over the country flock to the numerous events taking place in the Central Highlands, such as bull fighting and elephant racing.

B.    The bull fighting usually lasts several days and traditionally takes place at the village communal house where the bull is tied to a pillar carved with traditional designs and decorated with colorful ribbons. 

A.   The Central Highlands is the land of elephants, with troupes of both tamed and wild elephants. Every year on March 26, tourists can witness exciting elephant races organized by the M’nong people, who are famous for their ability to tame wild elephants. 

B.    There are numerous annual festivals and ceremonies organized by the ethnic people living here, such as an earth worshiping ceremony, a water ceremony, a thanksgiving ceremony, and a ceremony to pray for peace, prosperity, and fine weather for the village.

A.   Visitors can learn about the daily life of the people, and ride elephants around the villages and through the ecological forest of Lak lake, which at one time was the center of an ethnic kingdom. 

B.    A tourist might continue with a visit to the Dray Sap waterfalls on the Serepok river, where you can stop for a while to play a team game or sit amid giant tree roots and take in the natural beauty of the forest and river before embarking in a dug-out canoe to visit an antique house on stilts in Lak lake, the tomb of the elephant hunting king, a traditional long house of the local ethnic people, a 200-meter long hanging bridge, and Eano island.

A.   There’s so much to enjoy here in the Central Highlands region. It’s no wonder it’s been a great inspiration to many Vietnamese writers and poets. Here’s a song called “March in the Central Highlands”.

B.    The lyrics go: “March is the time for the bees to make honey, the elephants to go to the river and get water, for the people to go the the hills and cut the trees for cultivation.”

A.    For me the song is an invitation to come to the Central Highlands in March and see the revitalization of all life. Let’s take a minute to enjoy this great song.

Insert in song:Thang Ba Tay Nguyen

A.   That was “March in the Central Highlands”. You’re listening to the Letter Box on Radio the Voice of Vietnam. We’re acknowledging letters and emails that we received during the week. So stay tuned.

B.    One of our loyal listeners from the United States, Mr. William Patalon, who lives in Maryland, sent us a very thick reception report for the programs broadcast on the 14th of July, 2011, at 22:28 hours UTC, the 14th of February, 2012, at 12:36 UTC, and on the1st of March, 2012, at 12:32 UTC on the frequency of 6175 kHz.

A.    Thank you very much, Mr. Patalon. We’re proud of you. Your reports will be acknowledged and you will soon receive our QSL. Mr. Patalon also sent along a report from McKinsey Quarterly titled “Taking Vietnam’s economy to the next level”, which features Vietnam as one of Asia’s great success stories.

B.     Thank  you very much, Mr. Patalon, for all you do.

A.    Another listener, Jonathan Kempster, reported listening to us on the 18th of February at 20:45 hours UTC on 9730 kHz with SINPO rating of 55444.

B.     We checked your report with our station log and it tallied well. Our QSL card will acknowledge your accuracy. Thanks a lot for your interest in our program. We hope to hear more from you.

A.   A freelance journalist from Sweden, Borje Sahlen, sent a letter with a reception report for the broadcast on the 17th of February from 16:00 to 16:30 hours UTC on 7280 kHz. The report was detailed and SINPO was rated 55444. Mr. Sahlen shared that he is interested in music, novels, photography, and D-xing. He is a member of Tibro DX-Club, which has 11 members. We hope Voice of Vietnam is one of your regular tune-ins.  

A.    This week we’ve also received letters and emails from many other listeners around the world. Thank you all very much for joining us. We look forward to receiving more comments and suggestions from you. Our contact address is:

The English program

Overseas Service

Radio Voice of Vietnam

45 Ba Trieu street

Hanoi, Vietnam

Or you can email us at: englishsection@vov.org.vn

Time’s up. Join us again next Wednesday for another edition of the Letter Box on Radio the Voice of Vietnam. We’re Kim Chi and Truong Giang, saying good bye to you all.