The Secret to Happiness
Trailer Happiness (Map ppl20-1 7727 2700 177 Portobello Rd W11 -e Notting Hill Gate) Think shag-pile carpets, '60s California kitsch and trashy trailer-park glamour. Try the genuine Tiki cocktails and share a flaming volcano bowl of Zombie with a friend to ensure your evening goes with a bang. If you get peckish there are reasonably priced snack platters like Dr Jay's Green Chilli Fireballs and Trailer Happiness Smokin' Sausage salsa. With a soundtrack
Priests - some genuine, some not - will approach you near the ghats and offer to do a puja (prayer) for which you'll receive a 'Pushkar passport' (a red ribbon around your wrist). Others proffer flowers (to avoid trouble, avoid taking any flowers that you are offered). In either case you'll be asked to add up your family members whose happiness On the other hand, flowers are offered at the Brahma Temple, where there are simply donation boxes. Here you can offer flowers and sacred sweets for the happiness of your friends, family and everyone you've ever known - and still have change for a masala chai.
Double Happiness Finds The only indicator to the subterranean entrance is a vertical WATCH YOUR STEP sign. Once through the door, you'll find a beautifully designed speakeasy-ish lounge with artistic nods to the neighborhood throughout, plus a wonderfully low-key vibe. The space is large, but a low ceiling and intimate nooks add a hint of romance. Don't miss the green tea martini, an inspired house creation. 173 Mott St. (btwn Grand and Broome sts.). & 212 941-1282 Subway 6 to Spring St.
After exiting the mausoleum, check out the following nearby sights. Ho Chi Minh Museum (Bao Tang Ho Chi Minh Map pp352-3 admission 5000d S 8-11am & 1.30-4.30pm Sat-Thu) Displays each have a message, such as 'peace', 'happiness'or'freedom'. Find an English-speaking guide, as some of the symbolism is hard to interpret on your own. Ho Chi Minh's Stilt House (Nha San Bac Ho Map pp352-3 admission 5000d S 8-11am & 2-4pm) Supposedly Ho's official residence, on and off, between 1958 and 1969, its simplicity reinforces his reputation as a man of the people. One Pillar Pagoda (Chua Mot Cot Map pp352-3) Built by Emperor Ly Thai Tong (r 1028-54) and designed to represent a lotus blossom, a symbol of purity, rising out of a sea of sorrow.
They symbolise love and happiness in the developed world, but the harsh reality is that the smuggling and illegal trade of diamonds has funded conflicts and propped up corrupt regimes in many parts of Africa for decades. In an effort to curb the trade in so-called 'conflict diamonds', the Kimberley System came into force in 2003. The system aims to impose a method of self-regulation for diamond buyers and retailers to ensure that only authenticated diamonds make their way into shops. Critics have suggested, however, that retailers in the US and UK are failing to implement the system effectively, and that conflict diamonds are still for sale.
King Taejo named his palace Gyeongbokgung (Palace of Shining Happiness). The reference was to a line in the Chinese Book of Songs 'May the king forever enjoy shining happiness in abundance ' For 200 years it stood as home to a succession of 14 dynastic rulers. Of these, the greatest was King Sejong (1418-50), a scholar-king of unmatched abilities who sponsored many cultural projects, consolidated border defences, and served as a model of Confucian probity. At his direction, court scholars devised the phonetic hangeul alphabet, a simple system of writing the Korean language that made it possible for anyone to learn to read. Though it took a while to catch on, King Sejong's alphabet is one reason why Korea enjoys universal literacy today. Present generations have acknowledged their debt to him by attaching his name to Seoul's main street, a university, a luxury hotel, and numerous other places and institutions. The fortunes of Gyeongbokgung, however, were not always happy. In 1592 the...
I Chinatown The city's Chinese enclave is compact, and the main thoroughfares are along Cermak Road (also known as 22nd Street) and Wentworth and Archer avenues. Here you find good restaurants, such as Three Happiness, 209 W. Cermak Rd. ( 312-8421964), interesting tearooms, and shops.
Of course, the arrival of the first Jesuits and other Christians made Beijing an important centre of Christianity in China. Emperor Qianlong employed many Jesuits who, among other things, built for him the baroque palaces and stone ruins that can still be seen in the Old Summer Palace (Yuanming Yuan the Garden of Perfect Happiness), which was burnt down in 1860 by a combined force of British and French troops.
Standing of the techniques (and unbelievable patience) required to produce authentic Tibetan arts and crafts, the institute is a good starting point. Set in well-tended grounds some 40 minutes from Dharamsala, it comprises workshops, training centers, a temple, a guesthouse, a cafe, and a doll museum. You can contact the management in advance to organize a tour through the facilities, where you can witness the creation of colorful tantric thangkas (embroidered wall hangings), paintings, metalware, furniture, and traditional garments. Tibetan language lessons are available for interested foreigners. The beautiful Seat of Happiness Temple ** features astounding murals, including impressions of all 14 Dalai Lamas and 1,173 images of the Buddha, which decorate the 13m-high (44-ft.) temple hall. The gilded copper Buddha Shakyamuni was crafted by Norbulingka's master statue-maker, Pemba Dorje, and is one of the largest of its kind outside Tibet the arch behind the statue is decorated with...
Sexually, Malagasy society is fairly liberated in some parts of the country young women are quite forward with sexual advances to men, including foreigners. Among the Malagasy, marriage is a pretty relaxed institution and divorce is common. Children are seen as the primary purpose of marriage, and essential to happiness and security. The idea that some people might choose not to have children is greeted with embarrassed disbelief. Women are seen - by themselves, anyway - as the most dynamic force in Malagasy society, wives are regarded as the head of the domestic sphere even if they also go out to work.
Since the 13th century, we have been conquered and ruled by Germans, Danes, Swedes, Poles and Russians - but they also left some good legacies. As members of the powerful Hanseatic League, Estonia's cities flourished, and throughout the country there arose not only manors and fortifications for the conquerors, but also churches, monasteries and schools. The Republic of Estonia was declared on 24 February 1918, and for a 3 little over twenty years, the people felt enthusiasm and happiness about their home, work, children and creative work. In 1940, in accordance with the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, the Soviet Union forcibly annexed this small, peaceful Baltic country and occupied it for nearly half a century. The existing way of life was destroyed, and the Communist terror that was launched meant, among other things, mass deportations and the elimination of dissidents. The occupation arrested the development of most areas of the country's life, which until then had been at the same level...
Pemulwuy's story pposit is in stark contrast to that of another Aborigine who became famous for his association with the British settlers. Bennelong was born around 1764 into the Wangal tribe, the westerly neighbours of the Cadigal who lived in the area around central Sydney. He was captured in 1789, and brought to Governor Arthur Phillip, who was hoping to use Bennelong to understand the local Aborigines' customs and language. Bennelong took to life with the white settlers, developing a taste for alcohol, food and learning to speak the language of his new masters. Eventually he escaped, but had returned by 1791 when reassured that he would not be held against his will. He developed a strong friendship with Governor Phillip, who had a brick hut built for him on what is now Bennelong Point. In 1792, Bennelong went on a 'civilising'trip to England, and returned in 1795 with a changed dress sense and altered behaviour. Described as good natured, and stoutly made, Bennelong ultimately was...
If you are looking for an easy hike for the entire family, this half-mile loop will take you just a half hour. It offers you a chance to swim in a cool mountain stream and maybe enjoy a picnic lunch. To get here, take Kuhio Highway (Hwy. 56) to Wailua. Turn left on Kuamoo Road (Hwy. 580) and continue past the University of Hawaii Agricultural Experimental Station to the Keahua Arboretum. The trail head is on the left just past the stream, across the street from the parking lot. This area gets nearly 100 inches of rain a year, and the colorful painted gum eucalyptus trees at the trail head couldn't be happier. Along the trail you'll see kukui trees (which the Hawaiians used as a light source), milo (popular among wood artists), hau, and ohia lehua. As you walk parallel to the stream, be on the lookout for a good swimming area. There are lots of picnic tables and shelters along the trail at which to stop and have lunch.
From the bus stand ( 2650620), services head regularly to Pune (semideluxe Rs 200, 5'A hours), Mahabaleshwar (Rs 110, five hours) and Ratnagiri (Rs 97, four hours), as well as to Belgaum (Rs 60, 2'A hours) and Bijapur (Rs 100, four hours). For popular longer hauls, your body will be happier on a deluxe private bus. Most of the private bus agents are on the western side of the square at Mahalaxmi Chambers, just across from the bus stand. Overnight services with AC head to Mumbai (seat sleeper Rs 300 550, nine hours) and non-AC overnights go to Panaji (Rs 160, 5'A hours).
Its beautiful and unusual location overlooking a lagoon has made Langebaan a favourite holiday destination with Capetonians. As such, the town suffers from a number of poorly conceived property developments (such as the Club Mykonos resort), so if you're looking for untouched scenery you might be happier elsewhere. That said, Langebaan does support the excellent Farmhouse hotel, and has open-air seafood restaurants, phenomenal sunset views, superb sailing and windsurfing on the lagoon and a few good beaches, the best of which is Langebaan beach, located in town and a favourite with swimmers.
To a large extent, Puerto Rico is more a spiritual nation than a religious one, with lingering belief in spirits worshipped by Taino and African ancestors - like the Taino spirit Jupias, who haunts the dreams of mortals. Curanderos or espiritistas (healers) are consulted regularly on the subjects of money and marriage, health and happiness, blessings and revenge, to name a few. Bot nicas, the stores that supply herbs and potions essential to Puerto Rican spiritual rituals, can be found in almost every town. The practice is fairly tame, however. If you're hoping to find bare-breasted women anointing themselves with chicken blood and sticking pins into voodoo effigies, you'll be disappointed. The wildest Puerto Rico gets in terms of spiritual ceremony is a watered-down version of Santer a, originally practiced between the 16th and 19th centuries by islanders ofCuban or African descent. The ceremony represented a kind of barter system between man and god - usually to heal the sick or...
It weighs 14.3 grams (including the stone) and it comes from Lorraine. Ah, the wonderful mirabelle plum. We know so little about its origins. All we know is that Lorraine is the only region in the world with such a large number of mirabelle plum trees. Mirabelles go so well with all sorts of pastry, whether flaky or short. To my knowledge, 1 1 it's the onlyjam that leaves you with
Inside the old walls is the 14th-century Church of St Nicholas, a small green-trimmed building that was undergoing restoration at the time of research. There's also a stone tower (Bash-nya Lukovka), older than the walls, which has a viewing platform (R15 S 10am-6pm) at the top. A path around the back of the fortress walls leads down to a lake. The locals you'll pass toting water botdes are coming from the 12 Springs of Happiness, Love, Health and nine other virtues.
Be aware that your reactions to your experience in another country have as much to do with your expectations as with what actually happens to you. When you find yourself disturbed or upset about your interactions with Americans, ask yourself, What did I expect Why did I expect it Had I known more, would I have expected what I actually experienced Unrealistic expectations create much un-happiness for foreign visitors. That graduate student in Pittsburgh who could not find an apartment building where attractive female flight attendants lived had some unrealistic expectations, as he came to realize after he talked with other students who had spent more time in the U.S.
On Rua da Felicidade, 'street of happiness' and once Macau's red-light district, a cluster of shops sell Chinese pastries original to Macau. Koi Kei (Map p320 74 Rua de Felicidade), just next to Fat Siu Lau, specialises in phoenix rolls (shredded pork wrapped with seaweed) and peanut candies. Choi Heong Yuen (Map p320 2835 5966 70-72 Rua de Felicidade), going strong for over 70 years, is Macau's most popular place for hang-ya tilling (almond-flavoured biscuits). Both shops have numerous outlets but Felicidade has the most elaborate choices. Other Macau specialties you might want to try include nougats, preserved apricots andyuk-gdwn, dried sweet strips of pork and other meats. The shops usually open from 10am to 10pm.
The Khmer empire extended its influence deep into modern-day Thailand before a formidable rival arose in 1257 to undermine the distant throne's frontier. Naming its capital Sukhothai (Rising Happiness), the emerging Thai nation flourished militarily, claiming lands as far north as Vientiane, and culturally, developing a Thai alphabet and distinctive architecture and art. All this was accomplished in 150 years, before Sukhothai was superseded by Ayuthaya to the south. If you can only digest one 'ancient city', Sukhothai should top the list the ruins here are better preserved and less urban than those at Ayuthaya. While the old city will charm the pants off anyone, the
Of Abtai Khaan (1554-88) and his grandson Tiishet Khaan Gombodorj (the father of Zanabazar) stand in front of the Dalai Lama Sum and are inscribed in Mongol, Tibetan and Arabic scripts. In the northeast of the monastery are the base stones of a gigantic ger (now called the Square of Happiness and Prosperity), set up in 1639 to commemorate Zanabazar's birthday. The ger was reported to be 15m high and 45m in diameter, with 35 concertina-style walls, and could seat 300 during the annual assemblies of the local khaans.
Atop the towering Mount Olympus, the tallest mountain in Greece, the ancient Greeks visualized the pantheon of their gods reigning over the world. Almighty Zeus hurled thunder and lightning from these heavenly heights and helped repel attacks from the mythical Titans and Giants to retain the Olympian's power over mortals. Although Zeus was the reigning god of the sublime ether, just as Poseidon was the ruler of the tumultuous sea and Hades the ruler of the somber depths of the earth, Mount Olympus was the dwelling place of all the gods. It was a supernatural location believed to be exempt of regular changes in climate. The eminent poet Homer spoke of Mount Olympus Never is it swept by the winds nor touched by snow a purer air surrounds it, a white clarity envelops it and the gods there enjoy an eternal happiness.
Beijing can properly be said to be a Chinese city only during the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), when the Emperor Yongle - whose name means perpetual happiness - used over 200,000 prisoners of war to rebuild the city, construct its massive battlements, rebuild the imperial palace and establish the magnificent Ming tombs. He forced tens of thousands of leading Chinese families to relocate from Nanjing, the capital founded by his father, and unwillingly settle in what they considered an alien land at the extremity of the Chinese world. Throughout the Ming dynasty it was constantly under attack by the Mongols, and on many occasions the
Visitors will also enjoy experiencing the local culture. The strong Afro-Caribbean influence will make you live a different experience. See the region's very particular architecture, feel the people's happiness, try braiding your hair, savor the exclusive local dishes, like rice and beans , pati (seasoned beef pattie), -chicken with coconut, and rondon , and learn about the exotic customs originated from the region's different ethnic groups.
A frontier town with a breezy coastal outlook, Cooktown is a small place with a big history. It was here that Captain Cook first set foot on the Australian continent. Technically on Cape York Peninsula and the biggest town on the Cape, Cooktown has a laid-back, tropical nature where happiness is a fishing rod and an Esky full of beer.
As the sun goes down, the banks of the Mekong River become one long beer garden, with tables and chairs set out under the stars and the 'Full Taste of Happiness' (Beerlao) flowing freely - it's a great way to finish a day. There's plenty of choice, from the more impromptu vendors lined along the river between PVO and Th Khun Bulom, where it's more beer than garden, to the more established structures overhanging the water as far west as the original of the species, Sala Sunset Khounta.
Magoki-Attori Mosque - one of the greatest mysteries of Bukhara, the name of the mosque indicates the approximate time of its construction. Magoki , means pit or hole and suggests that the mosque stood at a much lower than the present level of the city streets and squares. Ancient Bukharans worshipped fire and they professed Zoroastrian religion. Each family had its own idol to whom they prayed for happiness and wealth. These idols were sold twice a week at the bazaars. Mokh was the ruler at that time and controlled the marketing. In order to develop trade in the city, he ordered the construction of a temple for the fire-worshippers.
Today, the kachina ceremonies, performed by men wearing elaborate costumes and masks, serve several purposes. Most important, they bring clouds and rain to water the all-important corn crop, but they also ensure health, happiness, long life, and harmony in the universe. As part of the kachina ceremonies, dancers often bring carved wooden kachina dolls to village children to introduce them to the various spirits.
In the West we think of it as a term meaning 'to dejunk', but feng shui (K C feng meaning 'wind' and shui meaning 'water') is actually a collection of ancient geomantic principles that sees bodies of water and landforms directing the cosmic currents of the universal q'l ( ). To follow feng shui guidelines is to create a positive path for q'l which can maximise a person's wealth, happiness, longevity and procreation. Ignoring the principals and blocking the flow can spell disaster. Temples, tombs, houses and even whole cities have been built to harmonise with the surrounding landscape in feng shui fashion. Within a building, the order of rooms and arrangement of furniture can also inhibit or enhance q'l flow. In recent centuries, the barging through of railways and roads and the construction of high-rises has incensed residents who believe the balance of the geography is being disturbed.
Though this is by far Thailand's poorest region, based on a new government Well-Being Index, the people of the northeast are the nation's happiest. A strong sense of community and close family ties are the main reasons cited, but it also stems from the fact that the people of Isan seek happiness from the inside, not from what they own. In the villages you can almost never tell who is rich and poor because big homes and fancy clothes garner no respect.
Or managed properties in the lead with at least 12 hotels. If you prefer only-in-Washington lodging, you will find happiness in choosing from historic hotels, unique boutique hotels, and a small but worthy number of bed-and-breakfasts. On the rise are all-suites (or mostly suites) hotels, the better to accommodate business travelers, who stay for weeks at a time, as well as families, who appreciate the spacious and homey facilities.
Big slip-ups can lurk at the very outset. Brand-name blunders can be fatal for a product launch. Pepsi originally stumbled into the China market with a name 'Qishang' for its 7-Up carbonated drink, which unfortunately forms the first two syllables of a Chinese chengyii (idiom) meaning 'to be agitated'. The soft drink was belatedly renamed 'Qixi' (Seven Happiness) - the name used today. Pepsi famously did it again with the hip line 'Come alive with the Pepsi generation' which mutated into Chinese as 'Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave'. China has big problems with brand naming as well SOD cleansing milk - heavily marketed in Shanghai and throughout China - is a dead duck if it ever goes West without re-branding.
Water-Splashing Festival (Po Shui Jie) Held in the Xishuangbanna region in Yunnan, this event is held in mid-April (usually 13 to 15 April). The purpose is to wash away the dirt, sorrow and demons of the old year and bring the happiness of the new. The event is staged virtually daily for tourists.
Rab has, since time immemorial, offered even more to tourists than just emerald-green sea, fish, crabs and red wine on the table in a friendly and homely surrounding. Rab is an island of culture, and has been from Antique times to the present day. With its beautiful scenery and long, pleasant walks, Rab is an island which fills the visitor with a kind of quiet, secret happiness. The happy town of Rab - Felix Arba, the Romans called it, and if anyone knew how to enjoy life and how to name a town it was they.
Even when it was ruled by the Byzantines, Constantinople was informally known as 'the city' (polis). The name Istanbul probably derives from this (the Greek for 'to the city' is 'eis ten polin). Though the Turks kept the name Constantinople, they also used other names, including Istanbul and Dersaadet (City of Peace and or Happiness).
Social scientists debate whether there are certain facial expressions that mean the same thing to people everywhere. For instance, some research suggests that the emotion of happiness may be expressed similarly in many cultures. Without entering that debate, however, we can say that Americans generally permit more emotion to show on their faces than many Asians typically do, but less than Latin Americans or Southern Europeans do. Foreign visitors who are uncertain about the meaning of an American's facial expression (Remember, don't assume those expressions mean the same thing they mean at home ) can ask about it. Smiling is a facial expression that causes particular difficulty. Americans associate smiling with politeness, happiness, cheerfulness, and amusement. They rarely realize that many Asians will smile (and even giggle or laugh softly) when they are confused or embarrassed. I don't
Buddhism (ftlfc Fo Jiao) was founded in India. The cornerstone of Buddhist philosophy is that happiness can only be achieved by following the 'eight-fold path' to nirvana a state of complete freedom from greed, anger, ignorance and the various other fetters of existence. When Buddhism entered China from India, its exotic nature was an attraction for many Chinese disillusioned with the formalism of Confucianism. With its elaborate explanations of karma, Buddhism offered answers to the afterlife that neither Taoism nor Confucianism could address. Buddhism also had its share of critics, who saw it as a threat to the Chinese identity. The growth of Buddhism was slowed by persecutions and outright abolishment by various emperors.
The town center has about a dozen tascas (taverns) and bodegas, but you might be happier with the glossier after-dark venues in internationally minded Praia da Rocha. Many bars and pubs, as well as the resort's casino (see below), line Avenida Tom s Cabreira. Depending on your mood, you might enjoy popping in and out of several of them a ritual akin to a London pub-crawl. The most active and intriguing hangouts include Farmer's Bar, Rua do Mar (& 28 24257-20), which serves wine, beer, and cocktails. It's open daily from 10am to 4am. A 5-minute walk uphill from the harbor front, Mariners, Rua Santa
Back on the road to Manley, there's not a whole lot else except stunning views - the Alaska Range to the south, the Tanana River - until you get to Manley Hot Springs, 152 miles from Fairbanks. Manley is open year-round, with all services available, and it's a very popular weekend destination for Fairbanks residents. However, if you're just looking for a nice hot springs, you might be happier at Circle.
Thailand has a national league, but apart from a few stars of the underperforming national team (90th in the FIFA world rankings in April 2008), most Thais will be happier watching Ronaldo, Rooney, Torres and ex-PM Thaksin Shinawatra's club, Manchester City, on TV than their own league. Still, if you want to see a match, nine of the 16 Thai Premier League teams are based in Bangkok two play at the conveniently central Chulalongkorn University Sports Stadium (Map pp98-9).
Known throughout Italy for its palm trees, Bordighera lays claim to the legend that the seeds of date palms carried across the sea from Egypt first took root in European soil here. To this day Bordighera has the honor of supplying its ubiquitous fronds to the Vatican for Palm Sunday services. The palm trees create a verdant canopy that extends up the hillside from the Mediterranean and the cluster of modern seaside development to the charming Old Town. Bordighera's other claim to fame is its enormous popularity with elderly Italian and British pensioners (its reputation as a getaway for retirees is similar to that of St. Petersburg in Florida). If you want glitter, you may be happier in San Remo on the other hand, if you want to enjoy some peace and quiet and the same verdant vegetation that attracted Claude Monet, Bordighera may be just the stop for you.
As central as Bangkok gets, this area is conveniently located on the Skytrain near shopping centres and loads of high-rise chain hotels. In the midrange, a devoted cast of tuk-tuk and taxi drivers throng the entrances of hotels zealously pouncing on every map-toting victim. If you're a pedestrian wanderer, you'll be happier at a smaller hotel that is less of a target. Soi Kasem San 1, off Th Phra Ram I, has a cluster of nice guesthouses for the early-to-bed, early-to-rise travellers. For more on the Siam Sq and Pratunam district, see p97.
Although the Manoir Alexandre, which served as Hadriana's home, is now closed as a hotel, visitors to Jacmel can still see it - and if you come during Carnival, you might even catch a glimpse of a zombi in the procession, although Hadriana herself has long since fled to a happier life.
Authorities shortly after he was identified by the Dalai Lama as the reincarnation of the 10th Panchen Lama. His whereabouts have not been made public since then. In 1996, the Chinese government confirmed to a meeting of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child that it was holding the boy and his family in protective custody . In November 2002, a senior official in the TAR government reported that Gedun Choekyi Nyima was living a very happy life, is now 5 feet and 3 inches tall and weighs 143 pounds, studies well at school, and his parents and entire family are happy. Beijing has allowed no independent confirmation of his or his family's well-being or whereabouts. Having been missing for 12 years, Gedun Choekyi Nyima turned 18-years old on April 25, 2007.
Shanghai offered the purely synthetic pleasures of civilisation. Prostitution ran the gamut from the high-class escorts in the clubs of the International Settlement and 'flowers' of the Fuzhou Rd teahouses, to the ye 7, or'wild chickens', of Hongkou, who prowled the streets and back alleys. The'saltwater sisters'from Guangdong specialised in foreigners fresh off the boats. Lowest of the low were the'nail sheds', so called because their services were meant to be as fast as driving nails, ofZhapei. Lists of the city's 100 top-ranking prostitutes were drawn up annually and listed next to the names of 668 brothels, which went by such names as the 'Alley of Concentrated Happiness'.
Statistically, the Maltese enjoy a good standard of living, low inflation (around 2 to 3 ) and relatively low unemployment (around 7 ). Schooling is compulsory between the ages of five and 16 and is provided free in state and church schools (church schools are subsidised by the government). A university education is also free to Maltese citizens and students receive an annual stipend. Statistics are only part of the equation - positive elements such as the warm climate, a strong connection to the land and a healthy sense of tradition and community also play their part in creating what to many might seem an enviably relaxed lifestyle. Dutch sociologist Professor Ruut Veenhoven (of Erasmus University in Rotterdam) created the World Database of Happiness, which includes the Happiness in Nations survey and compares happiness levels in 90 countries based on data collected between 1946 and 1992. According to the database, Malta is ranked the happiest country in the world in which to live...
After all this No Ruz itself finally arrives. Families gather around the haft seen table to recite a prayer seeking happiness, good health and prosperity, before eating sabzipolo (rice and vegetables) and mahi (fish). Mothers are also expected to eat symbolic hard-boiled eggs, one for every child. At the moment of the equinox (announced on every radio station) people kiss and hug and children are given eidi (presents). For the following two weeks Iranians cross the country to visit relatives and friends in their home towns, before No Ruz celebrations finish on the 13th day of the year, Sizdah be Dar (usually 2 April). Everyone leaves home to go picnicking out of town, taking their haft seen sabzi with them. The sabzi is either thrown into water or, in some cases, left to blow off the roof of the car. Either way, the sabzi is meant to have soaked up the bad aspects of the previous year, so this ceremony symbolises getting rid of bad luck.
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