Our story is blooming when one happened to mention Tu Chinh beach. Nature all sag.

It was the first Monday of the week, and I was invited to part with the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of France on the occasion of the end of my term in Vietnam. A lunch among friends should be full of joy and laughter. We talk about each other's work, food, education, sports, music. Then someone mentioned the South China Sea, the faces on the banquet table were filled with anxiety. My favorite eggplant dish suddenly like a straw.

Not only are we Vietnamese concerned because of the absurdity near Tu Chinh beach that happened right in our home, but also our French friends - in a place far away that is not geographically or sovereignly relevant. - Also very worried. They are concerned because an unprecedented behavior of international practice repeated over the past few years on Vietnam's sovereignty waters - a very bad precedent for the region.

I do not believe and do not want to believe that any Vietnamese can be calm knowing that one thing they are doing will lose even an inch of land of the country. And no one will not boil when they hear that the country has been violated literally or figuratively.

Patriot is always difficult to define because "water" and "patriot" are both concepts with a very broad category. Water is a piece of land buried in the umbilical cord, where our ancestral relatives have a career or just a green passport with two Vietnamese words? Is patriotizing the land or loving people of the same race, voice, and people in the same place where we live? Each person has a different understanding. I do not define instead of all this love but only share my feelings with the Fatherland.

As a child, like many children of the same generation, we learned beginner lessons about the love of our country through the verses "love our country, love our people", "our country has forests of gold and silver seas. ", then the stern deterrents, the story of punishing the traitor of the country. At that time, patriotism was a fairly clear concept, it was national pride, loving all people who spoke the same language as themselves and everything around them. Growing up a little, when being exposed more to the world at the same time with difficulties and inadequacies in the daily subsidy takes place, thinking that our country is not a "paradise" came to me a the most natural way. At that time, patriotism was only encapsulated around beloved people and roads and alleys everyday.

My greatest experience of patriotism was the first time I went to France to learn medicine. It was a shock that people called cultural shock when they arrived in Paris. The excitement of the wonders created by man and nature plus the daily material adequacy made me think of a second country. But soon after, I realized I didn't belong here.

Friends who always open their mouths are "thank you, sorry", patients who use all of their French language don't really understand them in their heart, extravagant lavish houses or simply aromatic foie gras Sometimes it's just a brief moment for us to enjoy.

I do not belong there. I have always been a guest in my heart as well as in the eyes of the natives. At that time, the country of Vietnam was like the destination of the boat that I was rowing, trying to overcome many waves to succeed back.

Life continued to go by, I added many years, swept away with "rice and rice money", and gradually forgot that feeling since returning home. Having "plagued" with the annoyance encountered every day should forget both the "love" and "water". The feeling of "choking" only appears when the Vietnamese team overcomes many difficulties to achieve a spectacular victory or when having her, the Vietnamese pupil is honored with high prizes in world competitions.

In my U50 age now, patriotism is about protecting what was considered good in the past as well as promoting the kind things that are increasingly rare in life today. From very small actions like myself not using plastic bags to big things like participating in community projects to fight floods and overcome poverty, I think of two words Vietnam. But the worry for the country does not stop when information about the sea and land is poisoned by harmful projects despite the future, by the giants making money at all costs. And that anxiety multiplies when those "giants" may not come from the country, and bring no spiritual connection to this land to love it.

I think if you have experienced those feelings, you also want to cherish and preserve them to make your country better. So, "patriotic" for me is to know recognize and reject what is damaging this land. So on, there is no need to elaborate patriotism because it has been available to us over the years. Everyone's love, whatever it is, is equally precious.

Nguyen Lan Hieu