15:32 | 08/02/2016 Society
(VEN) - Many international visitors and expatriates have a special interest in Lunar New Year, particularly in terms of traditions and food.
Foreigners learn how to wrap a Banh Chung in preparation for Tet
Joong Geung Hoo, a Korean manager at a garment company in Binh Duong Province, who have spent nearly five years in Vietnam, said that he had experienced three Tet (Lunar New Year holidays) in Vietnam and would never forget the special atmosphere at the year-end parties held at his colleagues’ homes where he could taste a variety of traditional dishes including Banh Chung (northern traditional rice cakes), Banh Tet (southern traditional rice cakes), pickle and stewed meat.
“My friends and I go to the city center to watch fireworks on Lunar New Year’s Eve. And on the first day of the Lunar New Year, I prepare lucky money for my colleagues with a view of wishing them a happy new year, which is a beautiful tradition practiced at this occasion. I like Tet in Vietnam the second homeland of mine,” Hoo said.
Being an introvert, Timothy Carlin, an English teacher at the Space School, considers Tet a special time of the year as the city is finally quiet. “I like anticipating the local cozy family reunion atmosphere, the cause for thousands of Vietnamese across the country to pass a long way back home,” Carlin said.
Tetsuya Osasumi, a Japanese director of a law firm, who has spent two Tets in Vietnam, said that he was impressed at the sight of Vietnamese returning home for family reunions. “Despite work, Vietnamese manage to set aside time to go shopping for Tet, buy tickets and travel home for reunions,” Osasumi said.
Nick Sloan, an American teacher at a Ho Chi Minh City-based international school, is eager for Tet in Vietnam as he anticipates the festive atmosphere here. “People go buying things, tidy up their homes and cook a variety of special dishes in preparation for Tet. People seem to forget all the hardship of everyday life. Every year is attached with a zodiac symbol and related to good and bad luck,” he said.
“I was really surprised to see vacant streets in the first days of the new lunar year and then people told me it’s Tet. During Tet, I can ride by motorbike to visit all corners of Ho Chi Minh City without fear of crash,” said Park Shi Jihoon, a Korean manager, when experiencing the first Tet in Vietnam.
Anna Tran, a Belgian, who has married to a Vietnamese and now lives in Vietnam, said that she felt especially happy on Tet. She has spent three Tets in Vietnam and has got used to preparing for Tet. “I am very impressed to see my husband’s junior family members line up to deliver wishes to senior family members and receive lucky money in return. This is a precious tradition to be maintained through Vietnamese generations./.