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Tet in Duong Lam ancient village

HANOI – THE traditional Tet atmosphere in Duong Lam ancient village, Son Tay is recreated through a series of photos by young photographer Cao Tung.

The joy of Mr. Hien and Mrs. Nam brought peach branches to celebrate Tet. The photo is part of the series “Taste of the New Year of Duong Lam Ancient Village” by young photographer Cao Tung (also known as Tung Cao, born in 1990), also a freelance tour guide.

Playing peaches has long been ingrained in the lifestyle of the Northern people, just a few small peach branches, pleasing to the eye, are enough for people to welcome spring. The color of peaches is said to bring luck and happiness to the whole family during the year.

The family gathers to wash dong leaves by the ancient well. Duong Lam, located about 45 km from Hanoi, is a stopover for tourists who want to find the old imprints, the characteristics of the old village with banyan trees, wells, communal courtyards.

After washing the rice, washing the leaves, and treating the beans, it’s time to pack the cake. The photo was taken at Mrs. Lan’s old house, Mong Phu village, one of the oldest houses in Duong Lam. The hundreds of years old houses have unique architecture built of laterite, ironwood columns and jackfruit wood.

“Coming to Duong Lam with an ancient and poetic space, I felt the smell of childhood Tet suddenly rushing back, when I was reunited with grandparents, parents and sat wrapping banh chung by the red fire, memories never before faded,” Tung Cao shared.

Spring is filled with the red color of gac fruit, the green color of banh chung and the yellow and purple colors of chrysanthemum flowers at Mr. Vung’s ancient house. This old house was restored, preserving the ancient village culture, is also a famous homestay, visited by many tourists.

The smell of smoke from the kitchen cooking Banh Chung spreads in spring weather. Next to the pot of cakes, spring seems to have arrived in every old house.

Mr. Hien relaxes and reads a book when the baking is finished. Mrs. Nam dyed her teeth and chewed betel nut. The custom of dyeing teeth black dates back to ancient times, but fewer and fewer people keep this tradition. With the continuous development of urbanization, it is difficult for ancient Vietnamese villages to avoid the influence of modern life leading to changes in daily life.

The two grandparents talked and drank tea in the Tet atmosphere. “As a tourist, I hope Duong Lam in particular and Vietnamese villages in general still retain such traditional Tet cultural identity,” Tung Cao confided.

Spring comes in front of the alley with the image of two grandparents going to give Tet gifts at the gate of Mong Phu village. Duong Lam ancient village has 50 valuable relics, preserving nearly 100 ancient houses over 100 years old and nearly 1,000 traditional rural houses in the Northern Delta. Visitors can come to Duong Lam ancient village at any time of the year and still feel the peace. However, the festival season in January or the ripe rice season is the most beautiful time.

Photo: Cao Tung

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