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How overseas students celebrate Tet

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There is not enough la dong (a kind of leaf) to wrap banh chung (rice cakes), no apricot blossoms, no peach blossoms and lessons still await overseas students, but they still can manage to welcome Tet holidays in a cozy atmosphere as if they're still in their own homeland.

Tran Ngoc Thai related that he has been in Australia for over three years. In the first year he was so sad because of homesickness and being new to the surroundings. However, things will be different this year. Thai and his friends will cook and make sticky rice and rice cakes together.

The fact that there is no real apricot blossom as well as peach blossoms means no difficulties for the students. They use colorful paper to make and decorate blossom. They even put some parcels of lucky money and small gifts on the paper tree.

Thai said that Tet party will be held one week earlier because the Tet days will coincide with the business days of some students.

Pham Tran Khoa, a student at Melbourne, Australia wrote in Nguoi Lao Dong newspaper that he and his friends are eagerly preparing for Tet. Some Vietnamese students are lucky enough to go home to welcome Tet because Tet holiday coincides with summer holidays there in Australia, but others didn't have the chance.

Some students, who haven't come back to Vietnam to welcome Tet, take advantage of this opportunity to earn money to pay tuition. Long said that there are plenty of part time jobs at this time, because most Asian students have come back to their homeland.

Long himself is now working as a cook's assistant in a Chinese restaurant. He thought that his job was assured , because there was no way the owner could do without him.

Tet holiday in the friendly country is also an opportunity for other students to take part in a Tet fair held by the Vietnamese community here. The Tet fair will be open and held from January 17 to February 14 in different areas in Melbourne.

Meanwhile, other students have decided to go on backpacking tours to other cities of Australia such as Sydney, Adelaide and Tasmania. They think that this way of traveling would help them study the culture and discover Australia's places of interest as well as accumulate good experiences for the future.

"This is the chance of a lifetime to study the native culture because once we are back to Vietnam after finishing our study it is very difficult for us to come back here again", Trong, a La Trobe's student, enthusiastically talked about the upcoming tour to Sydney.

Talking about plans to welcome Tet, Son revealed that he together with his friends had planned to hold a monumental party right at Lunar New Year's Eve. They had prepared for karaoke and it was hoped that they would have a jubilant night.

Nam, a postgraduate of La Trobe University, even proposed to hold an "online video conference" with all their friends in Vietnam with the support of webcams to share the joy between Vietnam and Australia.

"Everything is ready, all we have to do now is to wait for New Year's Eve", Nam said.

Having been in Russia just for only a few months, Nguyen Dinh Hoan - a student of Ulianovsk University, has gathered Vietnamese students all over the city to make up a plan to welcome Tet.

The students have ordered rice cakes and sausages at the market. They also make colorful paper apricot and peach blossom as well as decorating their rooms as beautifully as possible. On New Year's Eve they will gather at the dormitory to sing and take part in games together.

After performing ritual offerings to the ancestors on New Year's Eve, they will wish everybody a Happy New Year. Next morning, they will go to the pagoda and visit some nice places in the city.

As for Thuy Anh and her friends, the students of IImenau University in Thueringen state, Germany, they have worked hard to create a Tet atmosphere.

This year, they decided to wrap rice cakes themselves instead of purchasing from the market. Everyone has been assigned his work, from going shopping, decorating the house to preparing ingredients to wrap and boil cakes.


Source: VietNamNet/TP, NLD
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