China is a multi-national state and composed of 56 ethnic groups. Among them, Han takes up over 90% of China’s population, and there are 55 minority groups living together harmoniously in this big landmass. Their costumes, festivals and food are unique and colorful. I’m a girl from a Miao Autonomous County and have many funny stories to tell.
Singing and Dancing
In my hometown, people are very good at singing and dancing. Usually, singing is the best way to express your love to the one you love. There is a singing festival held on lunar calendar June 6th, which is the most formal way to ask a girl for a date. You cannot talk, but must always keep singing to say whatever you want. Also, the girl will sing back to you to let you know whether she is interested in you. So, you should be very carful on composing lyrics, because this is very important to win a girl’s heart. Besides singing, bamboo dancing is the most popular dance in my hometown. You need to get a very good understanding of your fellows’ rhythm, or your feet will be easily caught by the bamboo, and you’ll be eliminated from this game, and probably you won’t be invited for the following games.
Hospitality of Miao People
The Miao nationality pays great attention to etiquette, especially with respect to the treatment of guests. For instance,
when a guest visits, the host kills a chicken or a duck to entertain and feed the guest. If the guest comes from afar or has a long journey, the host will first invite the guest to drink alcohol called Horn spirit to relieve his fatigue. Before lunch, the hostess will present you a drink called oil tea. To make this oil tea is not easy, because it takes the hostess much time to prepare. First she should soak the tea overnight, and then mash the tea to get the tea juice. Everything just starts: the hostess should use the tea juice to stew soup, which takes at least two hours. When the soup is done, many other ingredients should be put in the bowl, such as peanuts, small glutinous rice balls, ginger etc…. Meanwhile, there is a very
important etiquette you should remember, that is the how many bowls of oil tea you drink. In my hometown, if you are a guest, you must drink at least four bowls of oil tea, or the host and hostess will not be happy because they will think you don’t like their food. There is a saying on oil-tea: one bowl, bandit; two bowls, thieves; three bowls, strangers; four bowls, friends. So you’d better to prepare well (keep your stomach empty) to drink four bowls of oil tea!!!
But as time went by, many people of Miao ethnic group have been influenced by modern society, especially the young people. They go out for study or work and their habits and customs are greatly changed. They probably have to get accustomed to big cities and seldom go back home. Anyhow, I hope us Miao people can remain our own characteristics to show the unique and precious culture.