First footers shoulder a huge responsibility during Tet
ChrisiMarr | January 26, 2009 at 02:18 amby
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I could not forget the excitement and anxiety when being asked to be the first footer to my friend's house on the occasion of traditional New Year festival last year.
During the Tet (Lunar New Year) festival, the first visitor to visit one’s home and offer Tet greetings is considered the "first footer of the year" (xong dat).
The significance of the first footer has its origins in an age-old belief that whoever is the first person to visit a family in the New Year can bring either fortune or misfortune for the whole of the following year. If the first footer is wealthy, healthy, kind, honest and generous, the family would benefit from his greeting of "good luck". The tradition of the first footer is one that retains its strength and is observed across the whole of the country even today, especially among businesspeople.