Buffalos are very sturdy animals, who help Vietnamese farmers in countless arduous agricultural work. It is considered the very faithful and constant companion in the peasants’ lives. The Mekong delta rice paddies conjure the picture of Vietnamese children, riding on the back of the buffalos, going home after a day’s work. The buffalos are often seen as playmates for the farmer kids.
“Ai ba?o cha~n tra^u la` kho^?. Cha~n tra^u su?o?’ng la~’m chu?’. Ngo^`i mi`nh tra^u pha^’t ngo.n co?` lau. Ro^’i mie^.ng ha’t nge^u ngao…. “
(Who can say taking care of buffalos is a painful chore? Actually it’s a nice life… I can ride on the buffalo, shrub in hand, waving it like a flag while uttering some songs…. )
Buffalos are considered faithful and painstaking . The Vietnamese zodiac describes the people born under the sign of this animal, as constant, steady, laborious and stubborn. These complimentary qualifiers are also used to describe the buffalos.
These bovine friends are quite appreciated and well taken care of, in Vietnam, because they are the necessary work and life companions of the Vietnamese farmers. Without buffalos, there will be no work in the rice paddies. Without planting rice, there will be famine. The buffalo is a sacred animal.