The beginning of Spring marks the start of a New Year in Persian culture. The Sal Tahvil or the Sa'at-e Tahvil is New Year's Eve, which is the official time for the Spring Equinox. The equinox occurs at a different point in time each year, so the date is different each year, but close to March 20th. This year it took place at 10:14 pm on 3/19/2012.
Part of the tradition is to set a table called the "Haft-Sin", meaning "Seven S's". The table is set with seven specific symbolic items, all starting with the letter S in Farsi. Additional items may be included that represent renewal, happiness, wealth, and good health. Growing up, my mother always prepared a Haft-Sin setting (sometimes the same goldfish would even live to see the next "Norooz" or New Year). Since I have lived on my own, I have never made my own Haft-Sin - I would like to set one next year, so I will start this year by brainstorming my presentation of these symbolic items for next year.
The tradition of painting eggs for the Haft-Sin is similar to that of painting Easter eggs:
|Painted Eggs for Haft-Sin|
|Love the hanging Sabzeh|
|Purples & Greens|
|Wine glass presentation|
Happy New Year and to the beginning of beautiful Spring!!!
Here is a good chart on some of the symbolism associated with the Haft-Sin: