It was sometime around 2015. An esteemed professor who just had returned from a foreign
Whenever I saw a friend going aboard on Facebook, my heart suddenly stopped for a moment, my head felt blue. A sad moment rose. I am afraid that I was wrong. I am afraid I was naive or buoyant determining that I will immediately return to Vietnam after my study in the U.S. The sadness could be from the jealously of a nicer place in the other countries. Or it is just a positive picture posted on Facebook captured a good moment, or simply, I am envying for their life. Grass is greener on other side. There is no difference than that.
I heard from grapevines that by looking someone’s photos on Facebook people often feel sad, envious and desperate. On a different tone, they look for scuff to critique. A few clicks “Like” are as a retribution and or build social investment. Why looking at a good, totally fact-based photo brings the sadness to us even that we have not yet lost anything. The psychological game is complicated.
Even so, I have the habit to move my figures over the keys for the “F” key, and the auto completion by Google Chrome does the rest to figure out that I wanted to browse the Facebook page. I closed the page knowing full well that not much to nothing I can be useful on the Facebook. Other thing I can do such as writing or doing my assignments where I really can produce value.
Somehow, my figures search for the F key, and like after a bad breakup, you still looking for that person, that you once actively kept distant, to search for comfort and understanding. A vicious cycle, prioritizing the less or the least priority tasks, prevails.
The photos of friends returning the other countries strikes my heart deep and led to tingling on my chest. I presumed they have think hard, harder than I am, and make a hard decision. Moving your family to a remote land, far away from their father land is not easy either. But they do it. Right. They move after hard thinking, unforeseen future ahead, quite lonely in a place that their friends is not closed by. Not to mentions their extent family.
That trikes me to the core. In Vietnamese, we have an old sayings: “Đất lành chim đậu” - benign land, birds come. Why scholar birds move away, returning to the story of my friend going aboard. To add salt to the wound, the Vietnamese is always proud of learning, respecting scholars and their work, promoting invention and creation. To question if the benign of the land, someone would think I’m unpatriotic. Let me disclose something here. I love my father land, my people for who they are, and what they have come through the wars, living with the aggression of big powers. I love providing the services by my scholar works. I felt guilty that I have not yet been able to be an instructor in a university to train the youngsters. I felt bad that they could have had a better learning environment. I felt bad for the time they are yearning for a university like one in developed countries.
When I was grown up, I heard countless stories of talented people but did not provide adequate commodities to their family. They love their passion, but their passion and the basic needs are not close friends. I am one of them now. I know many things but I have no car, home or big savings for my family.
Any after too many things, I just remind myself: don’t for search for “F” if you need "F" and don’t “F”ing waste your time whenever you are.