The World´s Women Day on 8th of March is a big event in Lao PDR, usually, women do not have to go to work and their husbands or boyfriends buy flowers, take them out to drink beer or cook for them. I am working at the Ministry of Environment in Vientiane, which, as all government institutions, will celebrate the Women´s Day in a special way. This year, the members of the Lao Women´s Union in the Ministry will prepare a Traditional Dancing (Lamvong) Competition. There are 18 departments in total that will compete with dance against each other…. traditional costumes and music included. The competition is taken very seriously, as also the minister will come to watch. All teams have hired official teachers from Lao Dancing Schools to prepare.. Dances can show different themes (like mother and child love, seasons change in the village etc) or present dancing styles from different provinces. In between dancers, some other Ministry staff will play music or sing. The men will responsible for preparing food.
Of course, the 8th of March will stay a free day for all women, so that the event is already taking place on 4th of March in the Ministry.