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Date: Sun, 30 Nov 2008 01:46:54 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Every Girl Is A Princess On Her Wedding Day

Her name is Thu and she has lived a life out of a dark fairy tale. Given away at birth because her family was too poor. Taken out of school before she was 10 to work selling postcards to help her family. She has had about 5 years of schooling. She remembers sleeping some nights as a kid on a park bench across from the Post Office in Saigon. All those years ago.

But she is a Burke Girl. And she has been like a daughter to me. She has been very helpful to Burke House and she looks after the younger ones. But life has been hard. Once, years ago, when a boy friend left her, she was sad and said that sometimes she felt like jumping into the Saigon River. I told her "not on my watch". Not if I can help it. I would have rather sunk with her into the Saigon River than allow her to die alone and unloved.

But she met a good boy. That's what she calls him "a good boy". Telling Papa Tom that he is OK. I met him and he does seem ok. A Prince Charming - I don't know. But every Cinderella wants a night at the Ball.

So next Sunday, December 7, 2008, while I am in Hong Kong preparing to return to America, little girls selling postcards in the town square of Saigon, near the Post Office, will look up to see a Princess, if only for a moment. Tony Blair called Princess Diana "the People's Princess"! Well, this is the People's Republic of Vietnam and next Sunday a Princess will rise up from the streets, and for a few moments she will be a Princess for the People!

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