Friday , February 23 2024

At Hmong Mini Mall, A Place To Share News Even When It’s The Worst

At the V-Nai Mini Mall in Southeast Fresno, a bland entrance belies the vibrancy inside. The rows of little shops sell traditional Hmong clothing, brightly colored embroidered bags, costume jewelry and hair ornaments. It’s made up mostly of female vendors, a few of them doing detailed work at sewing machines. The rhythmic sound of stitching sometimes accompanies conversations in Hmong. After all, V-Nai is not just a place to buy and sell things, it’s also a place to share, even when the news is at its worst. Cha Vang waits while a vendor shows his companion a set of dangly silver earrings and a necklace. Vang lives in Sacramento now but came back to Fresno this week to mourn with family members of his close friend, the popular singer Xy Lee, who was killed in the mass shooting Sunday. “He’s well known throughout the United States,” Vang said. “Wherever the Hmong community lives, they all love his songs.” Vang said he met the 23-year-old singer a couple of years ago and they became good
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