The Vietnamese call the lunar New Year 'Tet'. It matches the Chinese calendar and the celebration lasts three days. Many Vietnamese people ve live abroad use this time to get together with relatives. Saigon plunges into chaos with the arrival of the holidays. There are lots of bikes and the streets of Saigon collapse transporting the typical good-luck plants. The celebration makes daytime streets are almost deserted by closing stores because the main celebrations are at night, when a wave of people invades the streets, filling them with music and sights. During these days the Vietnamese believe that the gods return to Heaven to submit their annual reports to the Jade Emperor, and then after they return to Earth after New Year's Eve. During that time the Vietnamese try to protect themselves from evil spirits, putting a bamboo pole with a clay tablet and a piece of yellow cloth in front of their houses. And there are firecrackers throughout the celebration.
As I mentioned before, my trip to Vietnam coincided with the Tet New Year, there were many days of colour, music, joy and celebration for the Vietnamese. These photos were taken on the streets of a small town in the early morning hours when we went walking in the city. The "carnival" was composed of young boys, who, to the rhythm of the music (drum and a traditional instrument), were waving silk dragon and stopping at small shops in their path. As they danced, the merchants threw money in black cloth bags at them. As is tradition, everyone gives donations in hope that the year will be prosperous, and that health and fortune will come to their homes.