Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Very cool Example: Vietnamese gardeners in New Orleans offer much food for thought

On Chef Menteur clings Village de l’Est, a neighborhood of vinyl-sided or light-colored brick ranch houses in a perfectly mid-century suburban layout with sidewalks, a few main avenues, and a couple shopping centers. A low mound on the north side of town, covered in tangled weeds and shrubs, marks the levee that holds in the Pontchartrain overflow.

Six thousand Vietnamese people live in this American village. The Vietnamese moved here with the Catholic Church in 1975 following the Vietnam War. Many were fishermen, and the nearby Gulf offered a work environment similar to their homeland. They also went to work in factories, hotels, and restaurants throughout New Orleans. Everyone, especially the elderly, knew how to grow things -- that’s what they did back home. In their little square suburban backyards, they grew vegetables and fruits from seeds brought over from Vietnam. Some even crossed the levee and planted in that no-man’s-land. The wet fields, Delta soils, and thick, heavy air accommodated the same plants they grew in Vietnam.

PLEASE READ THE ARTICLE: http://www.grist.org/article/food-elderly-Vietnamese-gardeners-in-New-Orleans-/

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