In 2002, Lolita Séchan backpack to search Vietnam’s own world after a long period of “lying” and “rodent” mother house of the future, between doing comic artists, writers or … do astronauts. At the age of 22, she had the feeling of thinking like a child 12 years of age, Paris makes you stuffy, not to mention “the silhouette of a tree”-her father – famous French singer Renaud.
15 years ago adventures and friendships are nurtured from then with LoThiGom Hmong girl, is Lolita Séchan recounted by images in the story the fog Sa Pa (Les Brumes de Sapa, Delcourt, 2016). The album is also a self-help book, but also reflected the change of despatch Vietnam in the past 15 years.
Spend an evening interview at his home, Lolita Séchan explains why choose Vietnam for the first big trip:
“I chose Vietnam because, first of all, I love Asia. Always been attracted to Asian, especially Japanese, but I’m also curious to explore other countries. Moreover, in this first trip, I went with her best friend, but I did not take her into the comic. This is the only point not true story.
We both were attracted to the water before the war. To prepare for his first trip, we chose Vietnam to learn what happened there. We want to find out the war in Vietnam, but then we discover is that the country has spent much of the war, with China, Japan, and then to France and the United States of America. So, the more we learn deeper.
About personally, I also like to go find a private space for themselves, outside the family, in addition to France “.
The story begins with two scenes of the opposition: the gentle life, even monotonous in Paris, in contrast to the noisy, bustling atmosphere in Saigon. “Hello, you’re French? France? I know best hotel, many touristes “,” Motobike? “,” Come, I know a good place! Cheap! Cheap! “. Welcome to Saigon, with Lolita invites, the upside-down, the horizontal power lines along such as a map, a heavenly hell Bowl hotels were ma (“good”) and 8 pitches mosquito bites.
Lolita tried every type to the line between a forest of motorcycles in Vietnam: from horizontal and vertical bat eyes step by step to the times to “suicide” (kamikaze) to finally reach the level … on to the road as Vietnamese people. She is familiar with the coffee milk, wander each corner of the city … and to the Inner Temple in Ms. Cassiopeia (Large Market) where she had the feeling of finding little freedom in bird bought for 1 dollar (later increased to 2 then 3 dollars) for his release, although the trained birds then moved back to the cage. (After she discovered this).
“In the first trip, it is true that we undergo any” ups and downs “mentality. When she arrived, all were excellent, sensible, from the beauty of nature, people came to the city and the vibrant life everywhere. Everything is beautiful!
Suddenly came on Tuesday, we feel discouraged. Within a week, I do not understand why, all become rampant because we are the only guests as the others. Sincere relationship it is difficult that built because we come from a country that is said to “grow” and more wealthy. This makes any communication not be truth “.
From Saigon to hue, she picked up the ride hugs. One decision that she said “idiot” for his life. Leave the Hue profusely, she on the train out of Hanoi and Ha Long, but has yet to find a real relationship and in the heart remains confused.
Love you beyond time and 10,000 kilometres
In the night train trip up Sa Pa, Lolita Séchan learn about the history of the ethnic minorities living in the mountains West of her paintings in Sa Pa … in 2002 is still a small town, welcomes you with the “You buy from me”, “Where are you from?”, “?” … but not loud like Saigon or Hanoi.
Her first discovery trip ideas fall into cul-de-sac because there’s only four more days she will about Paris. In the cold and fog Sa Pa, Lolita met Lo Thi Gom, Hmong girl Contest was 12 years old. Lolita was the girl called Lo Contest, a name very ethnic. Because of the random sound should subject decisions Séchan Lolita real name on the work Les Brumes de Sapa, which at first I took the pen name.
Her first discovery trip ideas fall into cul-de-sac because there’s only four more days she will about Paris. In the cold and fog Sa Pa, Lolita met Lo Thi Gom, Hmong girl Contest was 12 years old. Lolita was the girl called Lo Thi Ta (or Ta?), a name very ethnic. Because of the random sound should subject decisions Séchan Lolita real name on the work Les Brumes de Sapa, which at first I took the pen name.
The story of two girls started from … airplanes because Lo Thi Gom has never been away. Naive girl asked: “How is it that I know is that the plane will not crash? And if the fall? “–” Yes … then death “. So, from this change, among them gently forming a casual relationship, nothing to travel. The first time someone leaked tai advised avoiding a famous Lolita lie in Sa Pa. First time someone put her on the hotel doorstep, located outside the town. The first time someone with her market. And the first person to farewell at the airport.
“It is true that with a little girl that has a relationship immediately, at first is from my side because I just love her surroundings seem sad but very awake before the change of ethnic Hmong, was unshakable between traditional culture, the other party is” capitalism “and the modern , do a lot of things change in Vietnam. She noticed and aware of everything. The main thing that made me emotional. So, between us a relationship quickly formed.
Two years later, I returned to find the little girl that day I thought. When found, the baby she did not recognize me. But since then, between us began a friendship and lasted 15 years. Every year I still go back to visit her. But since then, I have more friends than the Vietnamese, they lived in Paris or in Vietnam, which is really the true relationship “
Friendship and love between Lolita and Lo Thi Gom Competition built on the separated and distinct. A person with a happy childhood, life, familiar with the night a party among friends of his father, the Prince of the famous Paris traditional flowers. Also a person who grew up in poverty in mountainous Northern Vietnam, in the week to go sell souvenirs in Sa Pa, last week about the extra transplants parents, but enthusiasts are going to University, get rid of the traditional Stern and don’t want to be married soon.
“With the Lo Thi Gom middlemen, our friendship was formed with time. My father is a person living in melancholy, but I only revealed to Worry about Gathering Test Thursday, when talking with her I know that father of the Ceramic part would also like. So, I’m curious to know in Vietnam, they do it anyway, solving out stars with such depression status. This is the common point between the two of us “.
The friendship of two girls making each other come halfway around the world were nurtured during the past 15 years, especially since Lolita created an e-mail account for Worry: “crazy Gathering Contest! The first time I saw a computer, so that was out faster than both her mother! “. Within 15 years, Vietnam is also changing rapidly. In Sa Pa, this is shown in the picture to draw crowds of people selling souvenirs, East and also invite guests paddle pull over.
“What made me surprised for the rapid development of Vietnam. When I met Lo Thi Gom the first time, Gathering her still wearing traditional dress, never holding a pen bi and her proud not to meet any standards of beauty, like the “outcast”. Now, she wants to sits in the framework, the school that criteria for American and Western beauty imposes.
Vietnam, too, has a slightly negative changes a bit according to the capitalist order, the society of consumption and ideological unity for everyone. Besides that there are also positive changes such as free speech a bit more widely, more open dialogue. Now when I travel, people have the feeling to be told more with the younger generation, even about politics that is usually rare.
Utopian thing anymore is the speed of the old buildings destroyed, regrettably as a few areas of Hanoi’s old quarter, or the colonial neighborhood because it is part of the history of the country, or the new modern. I don’t know who we have to how to fight against this international phenomenon. But in return, if there are many more freedoms, then it is the change in the positive direction, but still not sure. “
Upcoming, Lolita Séchan again prepared a bag, a bag, a ticket for Paris-Dubai-Hanoi to see “sister Vietnam”. Vietnam became a familiar place where she “fled to Paris, but also is where she returned to where she was wandering and becomes familiar”.