My Family History

Trace your ancestors and then immortalise them!

                              hoa trang ngoc / zjjz firefly zjjz (đom đóm) 

                     Once, we sang together on Earth, now you are singing in Heaven. God Bless You. 

On Thursday, June 21st, I received a message from a friend at Paltalk, a chat room service, that dear Firefly had passed away. I had just left a neighbour's house in London where the family had recently lost a loved one. Having paid my respects, and feeling so moved by their love and courage, I crossed the road to my house, and opened Paltalk. The last line of the message read as follows
"
hoa trang ngoc (đom đóm) chết ngay 15/6 " meaning "flowers (fireflies) died 15/6" or "pearl white flowers (fireflies) died 15/6".

I cannot describe how those few words hit me. I wasn't prepared for them, nor had I understood the seriousness of poor Firefly's illness. My sense of both shock and grief was extraordinary. Of course, one is sad at the loss of any person that one knows. But I hardly knew Firefly. A lady, thousands of miles away in Vietnam, whom I had met in a virtual reality room at Paltalk, where we both sang songs, as did others in the room. Her kindness to me and support during those visits had so touched me. The more I looked at the finality of those words, the more I felt the loss. My grief over the past four days seems to have been as deep as I've ever known.

So, I started this webpage, in memory of Firefly, on the day I read of her passing. Only now, have I finally written this introduction. Just looking at the three pictures above, and the three images below, has helped me to collect my thoughts, and try to make sense of the past four days. It's as if Time has stood still. Firefly made the effort to make her Paltalk Profile interesting, and consequently, her pictures made it possible for me to put up this webpage immediately. Thank you Firefly.  : )
Pink lilies which Hoa Trang Ngoc kept in her Paltalk Profile folder. When I googled this picture, Hoa Lily Hotel, Ho Chi Minh City came up. I think Hoa loved this flower.
hoa trắng ngọc literally means "pearl white flower" also translated as White Jade Flower. This was my friend's chosen id when she first came to Paltalk in 2015. 
In 2017, my friend added a 2nd id zjjz firefly zjjz, and alternated between this and hoa trắng ngọc."đom đóm" is Vietnamese for firefly. Two beautiful ids.
                                                                                                                       How I met Firefly

1.  My first meeting with Firefly was on January 13th, 2018 in a Vietnamese Music room at Paltalk. I was looking for an early morning place to sing on a regular basis, and once again I turned to Vietnam. I had already found a lovely Vietnamese room for my afternoons which had been one of my few joys the previous year. 2017 had been a very sad year for me at Paltalk, both in Talking rooms and in Singing rooms as well as in one to one friendships. For whatever reasons, I had completely lost my way in an organization whose members topped 160,000 people from all over the world. Maybe I hadn't got over the death of a close friend at Paltalk who had made my life so happy in 2016. Who knows. So I entered Karaoke CANH CO QUE HUONG Karaoke.

   Above is a Paltalk Logo, below are a few emojies

2. There were about 5 or 6 people there. A lady was singing on mic, and there were two hands up waiting to sing. I typed " mc all " which is short for "men chao" ( hello ) My id was 'Chiron' – one of several I used at Paltalk. In a room of 6 people, there might be only 3 actually at their keyboard. I recall being greeted nicely, and began to feel good about the room. In Vietnamese Music Rooms, the screens are full of stickers and flowers. In no other country at Paltalk, will you find this kind of celebration as people sing. I myself love to support singers with flowers and emojis, so Vietnam is made for me. I eventually sang my song – Rhythm of the Falling Rain – which seemed to be enjoyed, and I received a private message request ( a pm ) which I accepted.

3. A message box then opened up on my screen. Sound is possible, even webcam is possible – but usually it is type-talk plus appropriate emojies such as smiles, flowers etc. The latter can be very effective if the 2 people do not speak each other's language. The lady who pm'd me was called hoa_trang_ngoc which was Firefly's main id which she had used since joining Paltalk in August 2015.
Hoa began our communication with a yellow smile emoji. I typed "hello hoa" and added my own smile, then 'thank you', and another smile. Hoa's first words to me were "VUI QUA CHIRON" which means Happy Chiron.  I certainly was - to have found this room. I replied "cam on" ( thank you ) the first Vietnamese words I had learned back in 2014.

     Bài hát Cho đom đóm ( Song For Firefly ) 2018

4. Our main communication was via emojies rather than words. We sang about ten songs each because few others had their hands up. I stayed about 2 hours. It was so sweet when Hoa typed "YOU THANK" as I was leaving, and I responded with "thank you". Hoa then typed THANK YOU and BYE YOU. I had hoped that in due course, I might help Hoa with some basic English if she so wished. Teaching has been my life, and often at Paltalk, I have helped those in the main Education section with their English Communication skills. I returned to the room 2 days later where Hoa had magically changed into Firefly - White Jade Flower had become đom đóm! Another 2 hour exchange of songs, and another sweet and polite private pm. 2018 was looking nice.

Oh my dear firefly, my pearl white flower

Thank you so much for January

Oh my dear đom đóm, my hoa trắng ngọc

Thank you for galvanising me

Here in your lovely musical  room

So many voices in such bloom 

Wonderful tunes filling the air

Enjoying our time with never a care 

Little did I know what pain you went through

Little did I know what would happen to you

If only you'd told me maybe i could have helped

And made it clear to you how much i felt 

Your first words to me, in that sweet pm 

Was just a lovely yellow smile

Then vui quá Chiron, yes I was happy

It was a very special time

The two hours sped by, so many songs

I wished I'd stayed  a few hours more

But two days later, I came back to you

And it was just, as it was before

Here in your lovely musical  room

so many voices in such bloom 

Wonderful tunes filling the air

Enjoying our time with never a care 

Little did I know what pain you went through

Little did I know what would happen to you

If only you'd told me maybe i could have helped

And made it clear to you how much i felt

Oh my dear firefly, my pearl white flower

Now all we have are memories

You've gone to Heaven, to join the angels

To sing with them and rest in peace

Below are some examples of Haiku Poetry. Haiku originated in Japan, and follows a structure of 3 lines - 5-7-5 - each numeral representing the number of syllables per line. Usually the theme is Nature, but I have chosen dear Hoa Trang Ngoh as my subject. I allow one syllable less or more per line. So a 5-8-4 structure might arise.
                                                                        Below is a beautiful Vietnamese poem on the left with a very poetic translation on the right
Firefly loved music so much. It's what we did back in January and February. Here's a selection of Videos from You Tube including the first song I ever sang in Firefly's room Karaoke CANH CO QUE HUONG Karaoke. One day I hope to find a recording of Firefly herself. How wonderful that would be. 
   Huong Lang - Chuyen Do Vi Tuyen                       Khánh Ly - Nối Vòng Tay Lớn           Hoang Oanh - Chi Ve Em Buoc Sang Ngang      Chiron - Rhythm of the Falling Rain
        Three lovely outdoor pictures.
      I
think Firefly loved her grey hat.

The angels looked down from heaven

They searched for miles afar,

And deep within the distance

They could see a shining star.

 

They knew that very instant
That the star was theirs to gain,
So they took you up to heaven
Forever to remain.

Look down on us from heaven
Keep us free from hurt and pain,
You'll always be within my heart
Until we meet again.

Các thiên thần nhìn xuống từ thiên đàng
Họ đã tìm kiếm hàng dặm xa,
Và sâu bên trong khoảng cách
Họ có thể thấy một ngôi sao sáng.

Họ biết ngay lập tức
Ngôi sao đó là của họ để đạt được,
Cho nên họ đưa bạn lên thiên đàng
Mãi mãi để ở lại.

Nhìn xuống chúng tôi từ thiên đàng
Giữ cho chúng ta khỏi bị tổn thương và đau đớn,
Bạn sẽ luôn ở trong trái tim tôi
Cho đến khi chúng ta gặp lại nhau.
                                     Here is  Ưu Tư Lần Đầu  by Hoang Oanh with both the Vietnamese lyrics and an English translation.  A wonderful song of hope.
Anh ơi lỡ mai duyên kiếp không tròn
Lỡ đang vui đứt dây đàn
Thì nói sao cho hết đau buồn
Chỉ nghe chim sầu kêu trong đêm vắng
Hay một cơn gió thở than
Em ngờ tình đã lìa tan

Khi yêu mấy ai không ý lâu dài
Có nhau trong suốt cuộc đời
Tình chứa chan như bát nước đầy
Trần gian hay ước mơ nhiều thế đó
Nhưng chốn cao xanh còn kia
Chia xẻ đời biết đâu ngờ

Mang nỗi ưu tư từng đêm qua đêm
Mối lo đầu tiên trong tim
Biết sao rồi đây tơ duyên
Hôm nay đôi mình đang sống bên nhau
Sau này nếu có xa nhau
Đừng để thương đau

Anh ơi lỡ mai duyên kiếp không tròn
Lỡ đang vui đứt dây đàn
Thì tránh sao cho hết đau buồn
Thà như tan vỡ khi vừa gặp nhau
Hai đứa không chung đường yêu
Không để tình vướng u sầu

Hoang Oanh was born in Mỹ Tho, Tiền Giang Province. Firefly is also from Tiền Giang Province.
I miss the charm of life not tomorrow
I'm having fun playing the strings
Grief can be over-stated
Only heard the birds singing in the night
Or the wind groaning
I suspected that love was gone

When love does not last long
There may be several throughout life
Love  is like a bowl full of water
Whether in life or in dreams
Other green places and heights
Sharing your life knows it

Bring the worry every night through the night
The first worry in the heart
I know why this silk feeling
Today we are living together
Later if we are far apart
Do not be too hurt

I miss the charm of life not tomorrow
I'm having fun playing the strings
Avoid the sadness
It's like breaking up when you meet
Two children do not love together
Do not let grief trouble you too much
firefly 28 june 21 treb 4
-3:45