The Fireplace Has Often Been Likened Compared To A The Soul Of The Muong 's Houses

The Muong ethnic group's houses are often built on hill sides, mountain foot or around valleys. Before building a house, they often choose the position and building aspect for the house.

If those factor are well chosen, they believe that the owner of the house will enjoy business prosperity and all members of the family will be healthy. If the building aspect is not met, at least the position of the house must be good, that means: the front of the house must face the flat, be near the river(s) or stream(s). The back of the house if leant against the mountains is fine, but in front, mountains must be a bit far-away; also there must not be valeu at the back of the house. The Muong plant jacks, areca trees and farm products around their houses.

A traditional house of the Muong ethnic group is house on stilts, made of wood, bamboos or palm leaves.

In the Muong's spirit, the god of fire is the best respected, thus, they often burn incenses nearby their kitchen on the occasions of festivals and Tet holidays. The Muong welcome guests in the kitchen, so beside bench, bamboo bed (ken) they put a small table for putting tea-set, betel and areca. Above the kitchen is a three-level smoking-seft that made of bamboo for putting utensils: bamboo frame, basket... Besides the kitchen are some jars that containing fermented cold rice, sour shoot, fish salting ... some steamers for steaming food, even vegetables. Speakingly, a corner of kitchen reflects somewhat of activities life of the Muong people.

A smoking-shelf of the Muong ethnic group consists of three storeys, with the siza of the kitchen-frame. The lowest level is used to handle cooking facilities such as sticks, basket, salt container... The second one is used for drying firewood, maitaining food and baskets... Bamboo frames, bells, papooses bamboo splints are put on the top storey.

A Straw Stack In The Kinh Family In The Northern Delta

There is one or two straw stacks in each house precinct of the Kinh in Northern countryside area. Apart from rice, the straw stack is used popularly in every family.

The straw has many advantages: food for cattles, material for cooking, mattreses in poor families, broom and straw string... Thus, straw stacks is considered as a symbol of village. It close-knit to the farmers. After harvest, a small or huge straw stack is also the signal of bumper crop or not.

Soong-co Songs Of The San Diu Ethnic Group

Soong-Co songs are folk songs of San Diu ethnic minority.  People who sing Soong-Co must be capable of remembering all the versions. They use some quotations as puzzles. The partner singers will get the suitable quotations to response.

There are certain stages of singing Soong-Co at each time: at the sunset, they sing version of asking to sit down, having tea, and chew piece of betel; at midnight, they sing the version of asking about homeland, family, career and desire, etc; at late midnight, the host will offer singers steamed glutinous rice, or porridge; at about 3a.m they will sing version of going to leave for home; at dawn, they sing version of saying good bye, and seeing-off.

When singing, the singers are not allowed to tease each other. Prosperous love couples should not leave out for their own purposes. If they like each other, they should meet later and find an intermediate called Mu Nhin to help. These couples will consider Mu Nhin as their parents. They give presents to Mu Nhin on occasions of Tet holiday and worship Mu Nhin. When Mu Nhin dies, the couple must kill a pig to do the death ceremony for him or her. Soong-Co is sung in a way of word after word is called Coc singing. Coc singing often appeared in the repatee singing. In the wedding ceremony, singers will sing in a way of lulling. They lengthen the rhythm and repeat it. The groom's family will send two young men to sing; the bride's family also sends other two young men to response. The duet is for Coc singing; the solo is for the lull singing.At the beginning of the wedding ceremony, singers from the groom's family will sing to salute the host, uncles, aunts, cousins, and before the ancestor altar. Singers from the bride`s family will response to each sentence or version.

The two families'singers sing happily and eat to satiety. They sing from morning to night till the wedding ceremony finishes.

Drinking Can Wine Is A Traditional Custom Of Ethnic People

Drinking Can wine is a traditional custom of the Muong ethnic group, the Thai ethnic Group, Ede ethnic group,....  
Unlike some ethnic groups in Central Highland who use only a pipe for both host and guests to drink, the Muong people use a number of pipes for people to enjoy the wine. They often drink Can wine on the occasion of festivals or receiving distinguished guest.

Can wine is a specific chracteristic of some ethnic groups in Central Highland
The jar containing the wine is put at a fixed place (in the middle of the house or the yard), so that as many people as possible can drink it. Pipes are put into the jar prior to drinking and a basinful of pure water is placed beside it. A buffalo horn to be used to pour water into the jar is put on a tray nearby. 

Buffalo horn- It is used for measuring water and pouring can wine into jar
The ingredients of Can wine include wild leaves, cassava roots and rice which are washed and put above an oven for 20 days or so.  Then all the mixed ingredients are wrapped with large banana leaves and left in a corner of the house for a couple of days. As soon as the process of fermentation is completed, the whole brew is put into a jar. 

When all the guests are seated, the host pours water from the basin into the jar. At first, he invites the guests to taste the wine from a jar whose wine is more bitter than others. This is meant to remind everyone of the bitterness of life. Then a second jar is brought in which the wine tastes more pungent. In the third jar, the wine is sweetest symbolizing that " your heart can be happy after so much grief"

Buffalo Fighting Festival

Vietnam is known not only as a developing country, as a country that has just been out of the war and is still poor but it is also known as a beautiful, peaceful and friendly country. I'm pretty sure Vietnam is the best peaceful country in the world.

There are so many festivals in Vietnam including a folk festival, special art performances, the inauguration, ecological tours,  a traditional rowing contest on the Son River, and buffalo fighting festival ...

Buffalo Fighting Festival is a traditional festival of Vietnam attached to a Water God worshipping ceremony and the “Hien Sinh” custom to show marital spirit of the local people in Do Son, Haiphong.

A good fighting buffalo must not be castrated and must have one or all of the following: big horns, a large neck, short legs, red eyes, thick cilia, strong and good-looking teeth, and a strong and red scrotum (affectionately dubbed the “gear box”).

Each buffalo has a distinct method of attack: charging headlong into an opponent; lifting an adversary onto its hind legs, exposing the vulnerable underbelly; or jabbing the eyes, ears or neck with its horns. Determining the loser its simple – it’s the buffalo that dies or runs away first.

In one of the fights, a buffalo is killed by a ho lao strike, prompting festival organisers to remove the carcass in a truck. Some of the fights get out of control.

Some buffaloes visibly despise the violence. When they are supposed to charge one another, the more docile opponents just nuzzle. But this is rare – more often than not, the green grass of the field is covered in blood by the end of a fight. The fiercer the clash, the louder the applause from the crowd.

Unfortunately for the buffalo, this good treatment is short-lived. At the end of the festival, all of the contenders – regardless of whether they win or lose – are slaughtered and fed to the crowd. Although it may seem strange to eat the entertainment, village residents say the meat is some of the best they’ve ever tasted.

Here are some pictures of the buffalo fighting festival in Do Son (Haiphong City) in 2011.


The Chasing Pigs Game - A folk game of Northern Delta Region

Chasing pig is not only a folk game but it is also a custom to worship the gods in some regions in the north of Vietnam regions. On festival's day every year, each chosen group of people in the hamlet give a pig to worship the gods.

The pig must have been well fed, it is a pig, it must be able to run fast every strong. On the festival day, the pig should be bathed clean then given to the council of the village. There youoll see some pikes and fences around. After performing the ceremony for the gods. Some young men of the village will alternately take part in this game.

On hearing the three rounds of the drumbeat, the pigs will be taken aback and run around the yard, the player must chase the pig and grasp the hind legs of the pig as fast as he can, so the layer must have trichs in order not to waste his time and his strength. Sometimes, a player, tries many times without success, so he must hand over his turn to another player. The contest will end only when the 4 pigs are caught.

Sometimes the game lasts until dusk and people have to use lamps and candles to lighten up the place; This may thake time up to midnight to catch the 4 pigs. All four winners will get their awards as well as the honor to be the first guest at the feast and bring home their prizes.

Hat Do Is Still Considered As An Important Spiritual Food In Life

Hat Do singing was thought that Saint Cao Sơn, one of the four most sacred saints handed down in Vietnam. 

Through many upheavals of time, Hat Do was more or less losing gradually, but this culture activity is still considered as an important spiritual food in life by the people who live in Liep Tuyet commune, Quoc Oai district, Ha Tay province...

Long time ago, this melody is usually performed in palaces, serving kings and lords. However because the lyrics are simple and refined so it’s very close to the folks. The traditional way of singing includes 36 melodies. In order to learn all of those melodies learners must have patience and passion. Hat Do only be organized once every 36 years so not many people took notice and participate, very few people memorized all 36 melodies and now they are usually above 70 years old...

Express Love - Then Singing

Song: To Tinh
Composer: Be Sinh Thang
Singers: Chu Dinh Thep - Ha Thi Ngoc

Tay Ethnic Teacher - Then Singing

Song: Co Giao Tay
Composer: Ngo Duc Quyen
Singers: Hoang Thi Luu - Ma Thi Thin -  Ha Thi Ngoc

Viet Bac Que Em - Then Singing

Let's enjoy!