New Year

What is New Year's? Does everyone celebrate the New Year? Does the celebration fall in the same day each year? I think New Year's is a holiday that everyone celebrates but will not be celebrated on the same day of each year. For instance, in my country, Vietnam, New Year's day is different from the American New Year because we don't go by the American calendar. We go by the Chinese calendar. Usually my New Year's celebration is in Mid-January or February; while the Laotians' New Year is in April. The youngsters especially look forward to this ceremony because each one receives a small sum of money wrapped in the traditional red envelope. On these days we eat special cakes that we don't eat during regular days. It is called sticky rice cake " Banh Chung". The American New Year is not a significant celebration as the Vietnamese New Year which focuses on traditions, customs, and religious aspects important to all Vietnamese.

Traditionally, the Vietnamese New year is the lunar New Year Festival. It is the most important Vietnamese holiday, and it is called " Tet Nguyen Dan". It is a celebration which combines the excitement of the Fourth of July, thanksgiving, Christmas and the beginning of spring as well as the New Year. The traditional Vietnamese calendar runs in cycles of twelve years. A genie, in the form of an animal figure, dominates each year. They are in the following order: mouse, buffalo, tiger, cat, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, cock, dog, and hog. As the old year gives way to the new year, the ruling genie quietly bows out to the next genie. To recognize its importance, Vietnamese ancestors invented many rituals, rules and regulations in its honor. Each family has a designated person to enforce tradition. According to our tradition, what happens th

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