Thien Bui

See below for a link to Thien’s audio file.


Childhood Memories

All of my childhood memories suddenly appeared in front of my eyes. It was a rainy day in May at my grandparents’ house. While we were visiting, my grandfather fell on the ground while he was sweeping leaves off the backyard. He suffered no significant injury, but the doctor asked him not to move around for a few days to be on the safe side. After we got him settled inside, my dad decided that we should complete the project of cleaning up my grandparents’ yard and organizing their storage unit. My grandparents had used this storage unit for more than a decade.  

    During the cleaning process, it brought back so many fond memories as I shuffled through many items. A particular wooden bunk bed that had been broken in half brought a smile. Years ago, when the internet was first widely used in Vietnam, many Western TV shows and viewings of sporting events like WWE found their way to people. At first, we all knew that WWE is dangerous so we only started by doing some simple wrestlings on old mattresses. As time went by, our stupidity increased. The dark-red wooden bunk bed was brought outside to the backyard because of its broken ladder. While waiting for the elders to fix the ladder, we decided to test the durability of the bed by attempting smackdown moves. In just seconds, blood was everywhere from our small injuries. The bunk bed was totally ripped in half; it’s color changed from a pale wood into a dark red wood. The bed was so bad that there was no need to fix it anymore. Grandfather planned to chop those chunks off for wood but forgot to do so, and it is still there. 

As I got older, I left behind the WWE tactics and decided to put much of my focus on my academics. At the age of fifteen, I decided I wanted to study in the United States. I had full support from my parents and grandparents. I joined a small, private college-preparatory school in Anniston, Alabama. My transition was not easy at first, mainly because of my language barrier.

I began to adapt to my new school environment. I joined clubs such as varsity basketball and band. I am currently an active member of my school’s Spanish club. I seemed to hit a slump when my school had to transition to virtual learning in March of 2020. It was a difficult time for me because I could not return home to Vietnam to visit my family. My host family was going to change as well. I had many worries of how things would end up.

Luckily for me everything turned out to be okay with my situation, unlike the wooden bunk bed. I learned to be more self-sufficient and am improving each day with my independence, study habits, and goal setting. I am looking forward to attending college in the United States and pursuing my interests in finance. 

Please click on the arrow below to hear Thien’s Senior Reading.