Overseas Vietnamese Preserves Traditional Tet Holiday In Cuba
They together made “Chung” cakes (square glutinous rice cakes), a typical dish for the Tet festival. Young Vietnamese people were told about Tet rituals and customs.
Tet in the minds of Vietnamese people has always had the meaning of reunion. Every spring season, everyone wants to return to their hometown to celebrate the traditional Tet with their loved ones.
According to a reporter from the Vietnam News Agency in La Habana, the Vietnamese community in Cuba was bustling with Tet atmosphere.
Hoang Kim Anh, First Secretary of the Vietnamese Embassy in Cuba, said overseas Vietnamese and students in Cuba have been excited about activities on the occasion of the Tet festival.
|Wrapping Chung cake. Photo: VNA
It is not easy to organize an event to make 200 "Chung" cakes for the Vietnamese community, she said, adding that the embassy staff has to make plans to buy and store pork, sticky rice, and green beans which are shipped from Vietnam.
She added that they used wild banana leaves to wrap the cakes instead of “dong” (phrynium) leaves.
Adults guide students and children to prepare for Tet, so that they can better understand Vietnamese customs and traditions, from cleaning the house, preparing traditional dishes, and presenting five-fruit trays.
Even though they are 16,000km away from home, the Vietnamese community in Cuba still maintains their traditional lifestyle.
Khong Thanh Phong, the representative of the Vietnam Embassy in Cuba, has celebrated Tet in Cuba for 5 years. Although he lives far away from home, he and his family still join the representative agencies, the business community, and overseas Vietnamese to celebrate the Tet holiday.
Hoang Kim Anh, First Secretary of the Vietnamese Embassy in Cuba, emphasized the policy of Vietnam’s Party and State to always consider overseas Vietnamese as an inseparable part of the great national unity. Tet is one of the activities that overseas Vietnamese and international students in Cuba look forward to.
Trinh Hoang Anh, a student living in Cuba, is always emotional when it is close to the Tet holiday. Hoang Anh has just graduated and is about to return home. “Maybe this will be the last Tet that I will celebrate here,” she said.
She was both happy to complete her study tasks and nostalgic for the Tet atmosphere of community in Cuba. Her days of preparing for Tet with other people, sharing sad and happy stories, and heading home together will surely become warm, unforgettable memories.
Tet is also an opportunity to introduce to international friends the beauty of Vietnamese culture. Julio Cesar is Cuban but loves Tet. He said that he likes the way Vietnamese people gather to celebrate Tet, this is a cultural feature that foreigners admire.
The overseas Vietnamese believe that traditional Tet will always be preserved and maintained anywhere on Earth, as long as there is a Vietnamese person there.
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