Wednesday February 21, 2018

(VOVWORLD) -Happy New Year to all our dear listeners. Today is the sixth day of the New Lunar Year. We’ve returned to work after the national New Year holiday week. We’re very happy to have received many New Year greetings and reception reports from listeners. Stories featuring Vietnam’s biggest festival of the year have received many compliments from listeners. That’s the best reward for our work.

A: Shivendu Paul of India wrote: “Greetings to all staff and listeners of Voice of Vietnam for the Lunar New Year. Like us, at the time of the Tet festival they clean and decorate their houses and office buildings. Their houses and streets looked very beautiful. During Tet Festival all people return to their homes. It is the same as our festival Durga Puja or Eid. Much similarity can be seen between Vietnam’s Tet festival and our Spring Festival or Doljatra and Holi. Vietnamese people also love food and during Tet they make a lot of traditional dishes. We buy new clothes for our family members. Through the Voice of Vietnam, I extend my greetings to all Vietnamese people.”

B: I’m reading an email from another Indian listener, Mr. Bhaikan Hazarika. He wrote: “I want to say thank you for your amazing fantastic program. I really appreciate your program and your cooperation. On the second day of the Lunar New Year you told us how foreigners celebrate the new year in Vietnam. Many foreigners talked with VOV about their experiences. I found today's program more informative and enjoyable.”

Wednesday February 21, 2018 - ảnh 1 Firecracker displays on Hoan Kiem Lake to welcome the Lunar New Year 2018

A: Ivan Lebedev of Russia wrote: “Dear Vietnamese friends , receive my deepest congratulations for the Year of Dog by the eastern astrological cycle. I hope that the year will be very fruitful with good news all around the world and that Vietnamese people will live much better than nowadays.  Many best wishes to your families. Be happy and enjoy good health!”

B: American listener Richard Nowak wrote “Best wishes for a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year! I enjoyed tonight’s show on 7315 kHz. The news mentioned the Tet holiday, construction of a bridge under way during the New Year’s holiday, farmers harvesting their winter crop and preparing the spring crop, and favorable weather for the first day of the New Year. 600 Chinese tourists arrived by ship. Da Nang’s temples and pagodas attract tourists and a book fair opened. The Vietnam news was comprehensive and paints a clear picture as to what’s happening in Vietnam.”

Wednesday February 21, 2018 - ảnh 2 People go to the Temple of Literature on the first days of the new year.

A: He continued: “A special report on the Lunar New Year Festival gave a great presentation on how Tet is celebrated in Vietnam. It’s a time for family reunion, all family members stay awake on New Year’s Eve, families cook special dishes, families clean their houses, and ancestor worship is done. Thanks for the great segment on this biggest holiday!”

B: Muneer K.P. of the United Arab Emirates emailed us a reception report for a program on February 10. He wrote: “I listened to your music show and a story about ethnic minority lifestyles in Vietnam on 7220khz. It was hard to copy it because of strong interference from 7215 khz of the China Radio. SINPO rated all 3’s with a Tecsun PL 660 radio and long-wire antenna.” 

A: Mr. Muneer talked about VOV’s website: “I don’t check your website regularly. But when I saw it today, a story about a “Hand-written letter exhibition" caught my eye.  It was very interesting to read.”

Wednesday February 21, 2018 - ảnh 3

People take row boats on the Yen river to Huong pagoda

B: I’m reading an email from Gerry Neumann of England, sent to us before Tet. “In this final week of the lunar year, more and more items about Tet are being broadcast over VOV, for example, in the domestic news on Sunday, 11 February, and the song that followed the news, “a song about peach blossoms which is very popular in the north at Tet. In the coming days listeners will hear more about the preparations and traditions linked to this important time of the year for Vietnamese people, and for everyone who loves Vietnam, like me.”

A: Gerry sent a wish to all the staff of the English section, many of whom he met when I was in Hanoi in December, for a very Happy New Year: good health, happiness, prosperity, and success.

B: Thank you, all our dear listeners, for supporting VOV over the year and for your New Year wishes. In Vietnam the first month of the lunar year is for celebrations. It’s the time when winter ends and spring, the season of birth for all living things, arrives. A myriad of cultural, historical, and religious events will be held throughout this month.

Wednesday February 21, 2018 - ảnh 4The trail to the holy summit of the Yen Tu mountain

A: The festival of each region has its own distinctive features, depending on the culture and customs of the local people. The North has the most diverse festivals. Notably festivals are the Hung Kings’ Temple Festival, the Saint Giong Festival, the Dong Da Mount Festival in Hanoi commemorating King Quang Trung who defeated northern invaders, the Perfume Pagoda Festival, and the Yen Tu Festival in Quang Ninh province. Major festivals in the central region and the south are the Fish Worship Festival in Thua Thien-Hue, the Mother Earth Festival in An Giang, and the Ba Den Mountain Festival in Tay Ninh.

B: Of the festivals, the most important and sacred one is the Hung Kings’ Temple Festival, dedicated to the Hung Kings who are considered the founders of the Vietnamese nation. Although the main festival begins on the 10th day of the 3rd lunar month, thousands of people make pilgrimage to the Hung Kings’ Temple during Tet to show their gratitude to the ancestors.

Wednesday February 21, 2018 - ảnh 5 A procession at the Hung Kings Temple Festival

A: During the festival, Vietnamese people from all over the country and abroad head to the Hung Kings Temple on Nghia Linh Mountain in Phu Tho province, to take part in this historic festival. It begins with the worship of the Hung Kings at the Upper Temple with offerings of five-fruit trays, specialties from many regions, and, indispensably, a couple of “chung” cakes and “day” cakes, two traditional foods of Vietnam.

B: The festival features such folk games as bamboo swinging, throwing a sacred ball through a ring, rice cooking competitions, lion dances, human chess, water puppet performances, wrestling, and crossbow shooting. The folk games recall the lifestyle of our ancestors and show off the strength of the human spirit. Visitors also enjoy “Xoan” singing performances, an art genre recognized by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

A: We’ll have more stories about spring festivals in Vietnam in our daily features. This week we acknowledge the reception by Paul Marsh of a VOV’s program in German on February 15 on the frequency of 9730KHz. We’ll forward his report to our German section to process. We acknowledge reception reports from Fachri Fachri and Eddy Prabowo of Indonesia, Siddhartha Bhattacharjee of India, Hasnain Raza of Pakistan, Adam Santer of England, and Kamal Hossain of Bangladesh.

B: Thanks to all you listeners for your feedback on our programs. We welcome your letters at English Section, VOVWorld, Voice of Vietnam, 45 Ba Trieu Street, Hanoi, Vietnam. Our email address is englishsection@vov.org.vn. Thank you for listening. Please join us again next Wednesday for another edition of the Letter Box. Goodbye.

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