Farewell (to the Lunar New Year)

Khovd, Mongolia
47.979521800000, 91.634756000000
Journal Entry:

It’s been a short time since we started on this journey, but I hope you were able to learn a little more about Mongolia through these blogs. Living in a new country can be very different, but it’s a good experience. There are always new people to meet and interesting things to do, and I’ve learned so many new things from the people around me.

One of the biggest things to happen in Mongolia recently was Tsagaan Tsar. Tsagaan Tsar (literally translated to “White Month”) is the Lunar New Year. It’s one of the two biggest holidays celebrated in Mongolia, along with Nadaam (national sports festival) in the summer. While the timing changes every year, it’s usually in late January or early February. Everyone gets the week off of school to celebrate, and for three days straight you celebrate the coming of a new year with family and friends. Everyone spends weeks preparing for the holiday by cleaning the house, making lots of buuz (steamed meat dumplings) and buying small gifts to give to others. I visited 15 families over the week!

If you are visiting a family on Tsagaan Tsar, this is how it might go:

1)      You bring a gift of candy and/or a carton of milk to the host’s house and put it at the altar.