Friday, June 25, 2010

Balul de Absolvire

A couple nights ago was my host sister's Balul de Absolvire. This is a type of graduation/prom for graduating students. Everyone dresses up in prom dresses and suits and prepares for this thing for quite a while.

These are some of the girls in my host sister's class. My host sister is the second one from the right in the yellowish dress.

We arrived at 6:30 at a restaurant in the park. We stood around for a while not doing much of anything. At 7:30 the festivities began. At big Moldovan ceremonies such as weddings and birthdays, there are always cameras and video cameras recording everything.

The parents all came in through a flowered arch, then the teachers, and finally the graduates. As the students entered the room, they ate a piece of colac (a traditional Moldovan bread used in special ceremonies) and dipped it in honey.

The graduates were each presented with a small globe, then the teachers were presented with a certificate and a bouquet of flowers, and the parents were also presented with a certificate and a rose from their graduate.

After all the presentations and such, we finally sat down to eat at 9:00! And of course with a traditional Moldovan masa, you know there's going to be wine, cognac, and vodka!

While we were eating, there were more speakers and activities the graduates had to do. They danced with a partner with a balloon in between them but couldn't touch the balloon with their hands. They had to describe their homeroom teacher by using drawings. There were many contests. 
And of course, there was much dancing of the Hora. As you remember from previous posts, the Hora is a traditional Moldovan dance that everybody dances at every event.

At 2:00 in the morning, I was tired and ready to go home. My host brother, however, was not. 

My host dad gave me a ride home, while everybody else stayed until 5:00 in the morning.

Overall, the night was really fun, I ate a lot, danced even more, and had to give a speech in front of everyone. Oh yes, did I forget to mention that part? The MC was talking (in Romanian of course, which I sometimes tune out...) and all of a sudden she called my name. A gasp went throughout the crowd as I made my way up to the front of the room. She asked me if I like dancing to Moldovan music, to which I replied yes, and then she told me I had to give them a speech in English. One of my friends who speaks English that is a graduate happened to be sitting directly in front laughing at me the whole time. It was great fun... At least it was in English and only probably 5 people understood it!