エンジョイ・シンプル・イングリッシュ 2018/4/5 L4 Laos
5 木 L4 Laos
Sbaidee! ラオ語 こんにちは
the Lao People’s Democratic Republic ラオス人民民主共和国
mainland Japan 本州
6.9 million ６９０万
capital city 首都
during の間、 夏休みの間の間
Buddhist statue 仏像
the past year この１年
world heritage city 世界遺産都市
Luan Prabang ルアンパバーン
wheat four 小麦粉
the Mekong River メコン川
dead 死んでいる、形容詞 die 動詞、 death 名詞
Land of Fantasy 神秘の国
Sabaidee! I am the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. You can find me in southeastern Asia, and I am about the size of mainland Japan. Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, China and Myanmar are my neighbors. Actually, they surround me. There are about six point nine million people living on my land. About seventy percent of my land is mountains. Most people are buddhists, so there is a Buddhist temple in every village. People live simple, peaceful lives. They also have some interesting manners. For example, Do not touch anyone’s head, and Do not show the bottom of your feet when you sit.
I am hottest during April and May. In my capital city, Vientiane, temperatures sometimes reach around forty degrees Celsius. There is a special festival held during such hot weather. From the middle of April, there is a three-day festival called Pi Mai Lao. It is held to celebrate our new year. Pi means year, Mai means new and Lao is for Laos. Usually, Lao people aren’t noisy. But during this festival, they show a different side of their character.
Let me tell you about this festival. People go to temples to wash Buddhist statues. They invite family and friends to join in a formal prayer ceremony. Did you know there is a nickname for this festival? It’s called the Water festival. You can splash water on anyone including the oldest villagers, your parents and people you love. Can you imagine adults splashing each other with water? It’s fun, but they do it to say they’re sorry for all bad things they did in the past year. Everything is wet during this festival.
This tradition comes from an old story. A god was killed, but before he died, he told his seven daughters to keep his head wet. He told them, If my head becomes dry, the world will be in danger. So people started to splash water on each other during the hottest time of the year. If you go to the world heritage city of Luang Prabang, people start to splash water before the festival. And if you go near the Mekong River during the festival, people throw wheat flour and sometimes mud. So, be careful.
People also make small Buddhist towers from sand along the Mekong river. Some people buy live fish and crabs from the market, and then let them go. They hope to do many good things in life so that they can be happy when they are dead.
I am often called the Land of fantasy. Here you often see morning mists, monks wearing orange robes and people giving prayers. If you are looking for peace, please come and visit me.
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