My grandparents, back in the day. These photos were taken over a span of 20 years in and around Saigon, including in their home and in the highlands of Da Lat. From stories told, my mother's parents were of the bourgeois class and lived a pretty high life of societal envy. They owned a car and motorbikes, holidayed all around the country, had outfits for days, and help around the house. Their quality of life was starkly in contrast with that of my father's and his parents' who grew up rather impoverished.
My grandfather never left home dressed as anything but a gentlemen, always in pressed trousers and chemise, an optional tie, and loafers. Not to mention, a pack of cigarettes ready to go at all times. He took up smoking as a teenage boy until the day he was diagnosed at 80-something with a heart condition.
I never realized my grandmother had white hair until she decided no longer to dye it. By then, I was already in my 20s. She was always very feminine. A touch of lipstick here, a dab of eau de parfum there, her hair always curled, an influence that carried with her from the days of French Indochina. Without those virtues, one was hard-pressed to capture her on film.