New Years is also celebrated according to the old calendar, on January 13. And if I may say so, this is my favorite Moldovan holiday so far. You could compare it to Halloween in the states, except that kids don’t dress up in scary costumes. Starting right after school on the day before, kids from all over the village go to each house to ring bells and sing and recite poems. In return they are given money and candy/bread. It was so much fun listening to their poems and songs and seeing what they had brought along as decoration. Most of the poems ended by shouting, “Roată măi… hăi, hăi”, a phrase I had in my head thereafter for two days straight.

L and E’s grandson came to recite his poem as well. He was so cute, and the luckiest visitor of all, receiving 200 lei from his grandparents, and an extra 3 lei from us. It was pretty funny because he was so excited to get more from us, 3 bills as compared to 2 from L and E. Unfortunately this year the weather was not optimal. The streets were a complete mess, some kids showing up with mud to their knees. As a result, we did not receive as many visitors as they have in years past. Hopefully it will be better next year. Happy New Year!

Click on the links below to watch some of the kids reciting poems and singing songs.