Nguyet is 34 years old, is married and has a 6 year old son. She is from Bac Ninh province, 60 kilometers from Hanoi. She has completed only six years of formal education but is now the Director of Massage Training and a Master Instructor at BlindLink and Omamori Spa Group.
Nguyet’s history with Omamori goes back to day one. With a total of fourteen years’ experience performing massage services and teaching, she is legendary amongst our staff and clients. She has been seriously vision impaired due to early onset of glaucoma since she was five years old, a situation which is worsening even now. It is predicted that one day she will be totally blind. Nguyet discontinued her formal schooling with sighted students in the sixth grade, fearing that continuing the struggle to keep up with her reading in school, she would lose her sight completely at an early age. Rather, she has continued her education on her own, both on the job and through her avid interest in listening to audio books. Even when she was still only twelve years old, she began working in a food store, and later a clothing store, gaining invaluable experience that would serve her well in later years assisting with the management of Omamori Spa in its early years.
At one point during the period when she had left school due to her disability and begun working, Nguyet applied for disability assistance. However, she was informed that since she was able to work she qualified for no assistance whatsoever. Not one to give up so easily, she persisted in battling the authorities for three years until she was finally granted status as a (partially) disabled person, making it easier for her to relieve the family finances somewhat.
Nguyet’s interests and life skills are many and varied. Her greatest passion is for massage, and sharing its benefits through both actual performance and teaching. Observing her as a teacher is like watching a great master of martial arts at work with his or her proteges. Experiencing her massage is other worldly, according to many who have had this privilege. Meanwhile, when not working (which isn’t often!), if she’s not attending to her husband or her son, she is likely to be found listening to audiobooks. Some of her favorite subjects include history, travel and self-help. She especially loves reading The Romance of the Three Kingdoms- one of the most famous book to the Chinese and Vietnamese. A fan of Dale Carnegie’s books, she has listened to several, for instance, How to stop worrying and start living. She’s also an avid student of the English language and has recently taken up Japanese, mastering the names of most of the parts of the body and learning many standard greetings and expressions that can be used in guiding the client in a massage therapy session.Other interests include western chess, music (she loves to sing) and travel. She is one of the first two therapists to have been awarded the opportunity to travel to Thailand in order to study some of the differing techniques employed by the best masseurs there. Indeed, she has borrowed some of these methods, adopting them to her own style and passing these on to other therapists at Omamori as part of her ongoing teaching.
Nguyet, very much a “people person”, dislikes being alone. She still maintains friendships even from early childhood but as she and they are mostly very busy with work and are separated by long distances, currently, her circle of friends is comprised primarily of colleagues. Though she says that she feels her family and friends have always treated her fairly and she doesn’t feel discriminated against, she does sometimes feel that other people underestimate her because she is visually impaired.
Not one to be underestimated nor to be taken advantage of, she tells of an incident that occurred many years ago in her village. She went to market one day to buy some pork. As the system for pricing meat is to weigh it on a scale, the merchant, observing that she could barely see, gave her significantly less than she had paid for. Upon arriving home, she confirmed this fact by re-weighing the meat at home. The next day she returned to that same merchant to buy meat, gently reminding the merchant that the amount yesterday was lighter than it should be! After that, Nguyet never again had a problem with this or any of the other nearby merchants.
The moral to this story is… “Never underestimate a master!”