Blog on 13 April 2013

NEW YEAR for Four Countries, at the SAME DAY!!! And Missoula Symphony Orchestra & Choral          

  “Tango & Fate” Featuring LIINDSAY DEUTSCH

Blog By Kunthy OK


Today is Saturday, 13 April 2013 which is the NEW YEAR for four countries from South East Asia (Burma, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand).  A group of the UM Mansfield Center Professional Fellows had decided to celebrate NEW YEAR at Vietnam Noodle restaurant. We left from the Holiday Inn at 12:30PM, and then we were arrived at 12:45 and order food. Our group had lunch together, sharing food, culture, knowledge, language and makes some funny short stories which coming out by Mr.Chunny ,Mr. Payong and Mss. Ya.

I have learned some language from other countries for the word “HAPPY NEW YEAR” in five difference languages: – Hnit Thit Min Ga Lar (Burma), – Sour  Sdei Chnam Thmei ( Cambodia )that my language , – Sa Baidee Pi Mai ( laos) , – Sawadee Pi Mai (Thailand) , and – Chuc Mung Nam Moi ( Vietname) . Everybody is happy by showing smile face for NEW YEAR celebrates in Montana.

Before I’m going to tell the new step schedule today, So let me tell you about the Cambodia culture related to NEW YEAR which we call “KHMER NEW YEAR” or ‘Bon Chol Chhnam Thmei’ in the Khmer language, is commonly celebrated on 13th April each year although sometimes the holiday may fall on the 14th April in keeping with the Cambodian lunar calendar. This marks the end of the harvest season when farmers enjoy the fruits of their labor and relax before the start of the rainy season. The New Year holidays last for three days.

The first day of the New Year celebration, it is the ending of the year and the beginning of a new one. People dress up and light candles and burn incense sticks at shrines, where the members of each family pay homage to offer thanks for the Buddha’s teachings by bowing, kneeling and prostrating themselves three times before his image. For good luck people wash their face with holy water in the morning, their chests at noon, and their feet in the evening before they go to bed.

The second day of the New Year celebration. People contribute charity to the less fortunate by helping the poor, servants, homeless, and low-income families. Families attend a dedication ceremony to their ancestor s at the monastery.

The third day of the New Year celebration. Buddhists cleanse the Buddha statues and their elders with perfumed water. Bathing the Buddha images is the symbol that water will be needed for all kinds of plants and lives. It is also thought to be a kind deed that will bring longevity, good luck, happiness and prosperity in life. By bathing their grandparents and parents, children can obtain from them best wishes and good advice for the future. During this time, people go to visiting their homeland, go to pagoda, Provide special food which they made it for their parents. During this occasion we engage in traditional Khmer games; they play such games as the Bas Angkunh ‘seed throwing’, Chaol Chhoung ‘twisted-scarf throwing’, Leak Kanséng ‘twisted-scarf hide’, tug of war, shuttlecock kicking, etc. Throughout the country, people merrily dance the traditional Khmer forms of the Ran Vong, Ram Kbach, Saravan, and Lam Leav in the open.

Okay, let go back to Montana if not me and some of us will be feeling homesick.  At 7:30-9:30PM, same day April 13 2013, our group of UM Mansfield Center Professional Fellows went to UM to join the season-closing concert of the Missoula Symphony. This Symphony program has been started in around 50 years and every year this program does their performance seven times per year. The two big sponsors for this program are MISSOULIAN and DEMAROIS. Missoula Symphony scholarship fund continuing the grand tradition of the Missoula Symphony Guild, the Missoula Symphony Scholarship Fund is decided to providing scholarship for outstanding University of Montana music students who play in the Missoula Symphony Orchestra or Sing in the Missoula Symphony Chorale. This program is engagement young people to join it because the old people really care their music, art… I have seen most of the people who join the Missoula Symphony Season-Closing concert are old people, let say around 2% are young and other olds. This year, the Missoula Symphony Association will award a total $6,500 in scholarship to five talented young musicians.

This is the first of my life to see and hear the Symphony in the reality. During the time for listening the music, I’m felling all musicians who play all kid of instruments are the best networking group event if they from different places and some of them not the professional but they can do it with the great job. This is the first time for me to hear this kind of concert and its sound: sweet, soft with the meaning of education, good advice, funny, struggle, group working, motivation and some time, it’s like the wind touch my body. I think the lifestyle is including in the music sound and activities.

The Sixth Day for writing Blog but the ninth days which I am staying in Montana, USA. I have learned a lot of sessions, best practices, cultures…etc. I’m sure most of the sessions, would be apply for my working place. Oh, I got it the sessions, cultural, weather, lifestyle….are skipping stone.

In conclusion, I’m really appreciated Mrs. Deena Mansur and Kelsey Stamm who set up the really special opportunity for all of us to participant this program and all the teams of UM of Mansfield center, especially US government who create this program for South East Asia come to US for sharing, learning and working as long term cooperation. Thanks J

Blog by Kunthy OK (Cambodia)


One response to “Blog on 13 April 2013

  1. I’m late to the party, but Hnit Thit Min Ga Lar, Sour Sdei Chnam Thmei, Sa Baidee Pi Mai, Sawadee Pi Mai and Chuc Mung Nam Moi to everyone! It’s is so enjoyable to read about your daily activities in Montana. Warm regards from Washington, Adam

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