Ly Quoc Dang, Professional Fellows Program
We decided not not drive far away to explore more the state as the group made decision very fast when Kathleen and Shanti asked yesterday, we would like spending more time to enjoy very clean atmostphere in the National Park, taking more walks and spending more time together instead of sitting on the car, it is better way to save energy, not only for car (environment) but also for both Kathleen and Shanti, it comes to my mind while voting for the decision.
Early morning of sunday, 7:30 am is still dark, we are going to have breakfast in order to leave right time today. I wonder that it causes in time-zone and geographical location and it makes me missing very much when I was in the State and Canada last year as well as during my graduate school in Switzerland last 2012.
We left the Pine Lodge at 9:00 am, I also think to come back here again as I really want to come back Glacier in the future and I may stay here as pleasure. Everything from yesterday still comes to my mind as Justin who is chair of Glacier Institute, introduced and inspired me a lot. I could see how does he love his job and how do he enthuse other people, especially young generation in the regional. I am thinking how to come back here again to become volunteer or how to bring others young generation in our region, especially in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam, they may compare how is our planet effected by climate change differently. Setting up as Glacier Institute for young generation and local community, visitors to come and learn are also my misison orgnization in Vietnam. I really love Justin’s job, that can change the world. I still remember how do all presentations from beginning so far and how relate to this trip as well as my action plan.
By talking with some people who I meet along the trip, with Kathleen and Shanti and by learning from professors, experts and friends at the beggining, I can image and compare how US Government System in the City and State, how culture and values of the US, how NGO and CSO work in the State, and how the national park work in the State. For instance, I know that Montana State is wilderness country, the number of cows are higher than people, there are 1 million people and 1,4 million cows are in the state, I can see how big the state is, but the local people do not own much land as their citizenship in their communities, most of land area belong to the Federal Government. Moreover, the Glacier National Park belongs to Federal Government and they are colarborated with State and Local Government to manage and work in the park. Sometimes, there are still happening the conflicts between the States and National Policies, and the State still works into more details how to treat with local wildlife in the state which does not exist in others ones. I am curious in learning that how United States of Canada and Canada manage and work together in Glacier National Park and how do they build relationship and framework, and governance for it, I know that USA is more powerful than Canada, that is related to our Mekong Region Countries as six countries have different laws, powers and levels, so how to build strong framework and governance in order to protect the Mekong River such as biodiversity wildlife, water resources, local people livelihood and so on. When we meet Justin and learn his job, his Institute’s role as NGO in the US and I can recognize very clearly about his organization vission, mission and values which I learn from Ms. Keri McWilliams in the third day of the program.
We left for lunch at noon time at Tien’s Place it is located in Whitefish and which is Vietnamese Restaurant, I image and think of that we have meal in the “fairy area” (Tien means fairy in Vietnamese) that senses to me we are in peaceful area and we are so enjoyable as nice scenary, clean air and wonderful food. We order many kinds of food and most of those are Vietnamese Food. I had a chance to communicate with him by Vietnamese, I read many stories about himself which were written by American Journalist as he is great chef, he was travelling through the sea to the US (in Vietnamese calls người vượt biên), I know that from my grandfather, there was a very few people who could alive to do this way, so he is lucky man. He is now succesful American, he really loves Montana State because there is peaceful area, no gangsters. He mentioned that the kids would grow up in safety place and they become good citizen in the state.
Our first sunday in United States is unforgetable for learning and exploring many things in the national park and small city in the state, it is remarked that you must visit the National Park while you are in the US, that is really good experience to learn and to share with your friends and your relattionships for coming back home, that is fanstatic trip that I never did before in my life. All montana’s trees put on amazing display of color in the Glacier National Park this weekend. We hiked through a temperate rainforest, experienced chilly winds on the shore of Lake McDonald, and got a taste of small-town life in Whitefish.
Missoula, Oct 11, 2015