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Spring in Pinh Village    
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Feb 11 2019

NDO – Peach blossoms and apricot flowers are blooming on the mountain side of Ban Pinh village, Trung Minh commune, Yen Son district, Tuyen Quang province, signaling the coming of spring in the remote villages. In the villages, all of the people are Dao Tien ethnic people. They have many unique customs, including customs to welcome the New Year with many characteristics, which express high community connections.

The Dao Tien people celebrate Tet (Lunar New Year) festival from the 26th day of the last lunar month to the third day of the Lunar New Year. One of the indispensable customs for the Dao Tien people in Pinh village is fetching water on New Year's Eve. They believe that the water source will bring them good luck and success in the new year. Normally, the fetching of the water will be implemented by the oldest man in the family or a young, healthy man. In the old days, the people used a tube to fetch water, filling the tube with water every time.

Dao Tien people have a custom of "worshiping a maternal side" on the second day of the Lunar New Year. This is an occasion for homeowners to express their gratitude, gratefulness to the lost father-in-law and mother-in-law, who gave birth to his wife. The offering tray is prepared with offerings like the offering tray for the paternal side, but the worshiping ceremony is held in a corner of the house. Then, the whole family will review memories of the people on the maternal side, and extend their best wishes and luck to each other.

The Tet offering tray of the Dao Tien people is indispensable for the banh chung gu (traditional glutinous rice cake). Women in the family will take care of the wrapping cake. The selecting of rice, leaves and meat and the wrapping of the cake are meticulously implemented that shows the ingenuity and respectfulness of the women and each family. In addition to banh chung gu, Dao Tien people also make other kinds of traditional cakes for Tet festival.

The first morning of the new year, after extending their best wishes and luck for the people in their family and neighbours, the Dao Tien people will flock to the place of community activities, which often is a large piece of land, or a village cultural house, to sing, dance, play traditional games. This is also an opportunity for Dao Tien men and women to meet, exchange and find a partner to get married.