Friday, February 22, 2013

Tet Lunar New Year

We participated in some of the rituals of Tet, the Vietnamese Lunar New Year again this year. The buildup to Tet includes the preparation of traditional foods such as banh Tet, a rice and bean curd concoction which is wrapped in banana leaves and boiled for 12 hours. The resulting cake lasts for days and is sliced for consumption at most meals. There is a real art to wrapping the banh Tet and these experts show us the technique every year at our home stay.

Tet morning we went to our family's house for a traditional breakfast and then off to the pagoda where we gave thanks for all of our blessings, paid homage to the Buddha and in return for a small donation, received our fortune on a little piece of paper in a red envelope from one of the monks. Our fortunes were for good health and good fortune....we'll take it!!!!

A tradition at Tet is also to give "lucky money" envelopes to young children and elders...but we also include the staff at Vuon Trau who take such good care of us every year.

Then off we went to the beach for three days. What bliss. We avoided all of the boisterous parties with too much "mot, hai, ba, YO!" ( one, two three drink!) and did what Grandparents do all over the world.

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