Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Hello and welcome to VOV’s Letter Box, a weekly feature dedicated to our listeners throughout the world. We are Ngoc Huyen and Phuong Khanh.

A: This week we received a number of letters from Fumito Hokamura of Japan with reception reports for a number of programs he listened to over the past few months on the frequency of 12020 khz using a DE 1103 Rod Antenna receiver.

B: In a letter reporting his reception for August 25, Fumito wrote: “I like coffee from Vietnam, but I don’t know Vietnam, its food culture or life very well. My favorite countries are Vietnam, Mongolia, and Korea. I wish I could take an Asian tour sometimes.”

A: Thank you, Fumito Hokamura, for tuning in to our broadcasts. Vietnam is currently the world number one producer and exporter of Robusta coffee (widely used to make instant coffee), second only to Brazil in volume). 

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B: Vietnam has become an important source of Robusta coffee for many large coffee roasters, due to its vast availability and reasonable price. Vietnamese coffee production is concentrated in the central highlands (80 percent). The province of Dak Lak alone produces about 43 percent of Vietnam’s coffee output, with Lam Dong and Gia Lai contributing another 41 percent. The majority of coffee plantations are in the south, mainly producing Robusta. Arabica coffee is mainly grown in more northern areas.

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B: Sipping a cup of coffee in the morning and observing the stream of people passing by has long been a favorite pastime of Vietnamese, especially in Hanoi.

A: That pastime has become, for many a lifestyle called the “coffee culture”. Many Hanoians start each new day with a cup of coffee in front of a small shop in downtown Hanoi.

B: Coffee was brought to Vietnam by the French during the colonial period and gradually become a popular beverage here. Adopting a legacy imbued with considerable French cachet, the Vietnamese have embraced café culture – sipping and thinking in a big way.

A: Every morning, be it a hot summer day or a cold winter day, you will see people with a cup of coffee in one hand and a newspaper in the other. Cafes can be a place for friends to meet and chat, for business people to discuss business affairs, or for a person to pause and reflect. Cafes are for gossiping with friends, passing the time, stealing a romantic moment.

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Lam Cafe in Hanoi

B: Hanoi’s cafes differ from cafes elsewhere in Vietnam, as they are often located next to a lake. Many Hanoians prefer cafés which have been around for years on a busy downtown street or hidden in a quiet alley.

A: There are many famous cafes in the capital city. Lam Café in Nguyen Huu Huan Street has served as a refuge for some of Vietnam’s leading artists – like Bui Xuan Phai, To Ngoc Van, and Van Cao, whose paintings still hang there.

B: At most cafes in Hanoi you will find four basic choices – black coffee or milk coffee – hot or with ice. But the coffee at Giang Café also in Nguyen Huu Huan Street, is something very Vietnamese - coffee with egg.

A: During Vietnam’s integration process, the new market economy is stirring things up in Hanoi. But despite competition from instant coffee and modern variations like Cappuccino, Hanoians still prefer the older, more romantic, traditional sidewalk cafes of the old Quarter.

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B: That’s a short take on Vietnamese coffee and coffee culture. Now here’s a letter from Grant Skinner of the UK, who listened to our broadcast on September 2 on the frequency of 7280. Reporting that noise like wind overpowered VOV’s signal, he rated SINPO at 25332 and wrote: “Vietnam is a beautiful country. I like everything related to this country because of that I listen to Voice of Vietnam. They provide excellent ways for me to find out many things about Vietnam.”

A: In an email to VOV this week, Russ Richards of the US wrote: “Thanks for your wonderful show. Your station is my favorite in the world. You keep me informed of current events in Vietnam and throughout Southeast Asia. I have the utmost appreciation for the bilateral ties between our two countries. And I hope that someday our peoples can be best friends”.

B: Thank you, Russ Richards. This might be the first time we have received feedback from you, Russ. Please keep tuning in to our broadcast to learn more about Vietnam, its land, culture, and people. We’ll send you our program schedule and frequency list to keep you updated. We hope to hear more from you.

A: Paul Walker of the US sent us detailed reports for the programs on September 17th, 19th, and 22nd on the frequency of 7220 and 7135 khz. He reported that even though 7135 is beamed to the Carribean, when conditions are good, he can hear it pretty well because the long path of the signal brings it up his way”.

B: For this reception, he said he used a Tecsun PL880 with a 225 foot wire oriented to provide east and west directional pick up patterns, a DX HF PreAmp and an Em Tech Zm2 Antenna tuner. He sent us recordings of the programs and photos of himself. He wrote: “Your broadcasts are appreciated. I very much enjoy traditional Vietnamese music along and feature reports on everyday life and culture in Vietnam.”

A: Paul said a friend of his in Mobile, Alabama told him that VOV’s 0230 UTC English broadcasts on 7315 and 6175 khz were not missing on September 21. Thank you, Paul, for your regular reports. We’ll forward your reception reports to our technicians for follow up and send you QSL cards to confirm your reports.

B: We’d like to thank Richard Lemke of Canada for sending us several reports on our programs. He listened to VOV broadcasts on September 14th, 15th, and 16th on the frequency of 7135 and rated SINPO at 55433 and 55434. Richard, we’ll confirm your reports with our new verification cards.

A: We’d also like to acknowledge emails and letters from Toshiya Nishimura of Japan, Richard Nowak of the US, Risto Happonen of Finland, Chister Brunstrom and Thomas Corcoran of Sweden, Shyrokov Artem of Ukraine, Andrew Siriami of Canada, Tjang Pak Ning of Indonesia, Miss Shameem Daz of Pakistan, Abdullah Rana of Bangladesh, and Sekar Thalainayar of India. Thank you all for listening to VOV on shortwave and online and for visiting our website at We’ll verify your reception reports and hope you’ll receive our QSL cards soon.

B: We welcome your feedback at our station: English Section, VOVworld, Voice of Vietnam, 45 Ba Trieu Street, Hanoi, Vietnam. Our email address is Good bye until next time.





We are listening all programmers. His voice fantastic. We want VOV announcer. Very sad news. God bless you. (VOVworld) – Trinh Thi Ngo, a legendary announcer of Radio the Voice... More