Monday , June 24 2024

Valentin Constantinescu – a Romanian with ‘Vietnamese blood’

Trần Khánh An

Valentin Constantinescu, better known by his nickname Chiếc Tây Valentin, regards himself as “a Westerner from Romania with Vietnamese blood.”

The Romanian man does not exaggerate or play on words – after nearly two decades in Việt Nam, he genuinely speaks Vietnamese fluently and profoundly understands this nation like a true Vietnamese.

Valentin Constantinescu, 38 years old from Romania, has lived in Việt Nam for 19 years. — Photo courtesy of Valentin Constantinescu

His story with Việt Nam began in 2004 after graduating from high school, as he got a scholarship to study at the Diplomatic Academy of Việt Nam.

Valentin shared with Việt Nam News that he remembers vividly the heat and humidity of the ambience, as well as numerous motorcycles along the road to the student dormitory on the first day he set foot in Hà Nội.

Valentin was impressed by Hà Nội’s blend of tradition and modernity, which he described as “even more convenient than some developed countries.”

“I can go and stop anywhere, anytime on a motorbike with ease. Even shopping and dining are within easy reach,” he said.

“Even now, the payment system in Việt Nam is impressive,” Valentin added. “As bank transfers and QR code payments are more common, all you truly need to carry is a phone.”

“Vietnamese people are also friendly and hospitable. After the first week in Hà Nội, I decided I would never leave Việt Nam again.”

Valentin led a team in “The Magic V” gameshow on VTV3 in 2022. — Photo courtesy of Valentin Constantinescu

The 38-year-old now works as an English teacher and a content creator, producing content about Vietnamese culture and his experiences as an expat living in Việt Nam. This role earns him more than half a million followers on all social platforms.

He has also participated in numerous gameshows and television programmes, winning over Vietnamese audiences with his sharp wit, conversational charm and profound knowledge of Việt Nam.

Valentin is also a chàng rể Hà Nội (Hà Nội’s son-in-law) — a term to describe a man marrying a Hà Nội’s woman. After he met his wife in 2016, Cupid immediately shot an arrow to match the couple up, and they married in 2018.

Valentin admitted that adjusting to his role as Hà Nội’s son-in-law was a bit challenging.

“My wife and I can have a loose timetable while we live together. When we visit our wife’s parents, however, we live in a more ordered manner,” he shared.

“However, I believe that regularity and discipline in lifestyle are also unique characteristics of the Hà Nội people.”

Valentin’s seven-year multicultural marriage has given him a nuanced viewpoint of Eastern and Western traditions.

“I realise that both Eastern and Western culture are somehow constraining women,” he said.

In Việt Nam, unlike Western countries, it is not a custom that the wife must acquire her husband’s surname after marriage. However, it is a widely held belief here that when a woman marries, she is expected to care for her husband’s family more, as if her parents had lost a daughter.

“When my wife kept her Vietnamese last name, Phạm, I highly supported my wife’s decision and was so happy for her,” he recalled.

“I also frequently encourage my wife to visit and take care of her family so that her parents do not feel like losing their daughter,” he added.

“If I were a father, I would be happy if my daughter marries a wonderful spouse and has a happy life, rather than suffering with the pain of losing my child.”

Valentin supported his wife to keep her Vietnamese surname after marriage. — Photo courtesy of Valentin Constantinescu

Due to the work change, Valentin and his wife moved to HCM City in 2018, and they miss Hà Nội weather and cuisine terribly. Hà Nội truly has cast him under its spell.

“The cold in Hà Nội and the sensation of being bundled up in layers of warm clothing, which also reminds me of Romania, is what I miss most,” Valentin recalled.

“Southern food is a little bit sweet for me, whereas food in Hà Nội is perfect. While some may consider Hà Nội’s delicacies to be bland, the unique aspect of Hà Nội cuisine is that it empowers diners to season and customise their dishes with spices,” he added.

Valentin and his wife both love cooking and share equal footing in the kitchen. She taught him how to prepare Vietnamese dishes, and now he could cook for their family and friends.

He prefers rolls because they are simple to prepare, as well as bordelaise sauce, which is not only a Hà Nội speciality but also reminds him of his time in Europe.

Valentin also hinted to Việt Nam News about his biggest project yet – he plans to travel across Việt Nam and spend at least a few months in each province to explore and introduce the people, culture, and cuisine.

Valentin intends to travel across Việt Nam, spending at least a few months in each province to explore and introduce the people, culture and local cuisine. — Photo courtesy of Valentin Constantinescu

“I want to visit all provinces and cities across the country. I have only lived in two major cities; even when I travel, I have not completely immersed myself and lived as a native resident,” he revealed the reason behind his upcoming project.

As an expat who has lived in Việt Nam for nearly two decades, he is also confident that his unique viewpoint and extensive knowledge of his content can enrich the visitors’ experience compared to other foreign travelling vloggers – who may spend just a few weeks in Việt Nam.

“I hope my videos will offer the audience valuable insights into local customs, culture, and cuisine, proving that Việt Nam is a place worth living.” — VNS

Read More :
- Reduce Hair Loss with PURA D’OR Gold Label Shampoo
- Castor Oil Has Made a “Huge” Difference With Hair and Brow Growth
- Excessive hair loss in men: Signs of illness that cannot be subjective
- Dịch Vụ SEO Website ở Los Angeles, CA: đưa trang web doanh nghiệp bạn lên top Google
- Nails Salon Sierra Madre