Friday, April 1, 2016

Sizdah Bedar- Celebrating 13

Today is Sizdah Bedar (translated roughly as 13 outdoors), the last day of Nowruz. On this day, Iranians spend the day outdoors picnicking. There are a couple of traditions on this day: 


A photo posted by Pantea F (@mypersiancorner) on

Young girls tie a knot in the sabzeh from the Haft Seen Table and make a wish to find a husband in the coming here. There is even a little joke verse that goes with this: 

sizdah bedar, sâle degar, khuneye shohar // 13 bedar, next year, at your husband's home

And to take the joke a bit farther, some might add (though not as common): 

un sâle degar, bacheh baghal // and the next year, a child in arms

Another tradition is to throw out the sabzeh which is supposed to have absorbed all the negativity and ill in the house as it was growing. It is usually thrown into a stream or river- flowing water. This is symbolic as water represents purity, and throwing the sabzeh into flowing water represents new beginnings and purity transporting evil away. It's not uncommon to see people driving around with their sabzeh on the hood or roof of their car on this day. 

Me on Tabiat Bridge on 13 bedar, 1394

Last year, I spent my first 13 bedar in Iran on Pole Tabiat, Nature Bridge, in Tehran, and the weather could not have been more spectacular. There were plenty of picnickers, campers, and outdoor markets. People were grilling kabob and preparing or eating âsh.


A photo posted by Pantea F (@mypersiancorner) on

This year we've had the complete opposite weather- rain and snow! But in spite of that, people are still out (just perhaps dressed a bit warmer). 

13 represents bad luck in many places, but I love how Iranians celebrate the 13th day as getting rid of bad luck and negative energy. Wishing you all a wonderful 1395 ahead! 

 Pontia 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for this blog! My father is from Iran and I am finally planning a trip there. I take Farsi in the fall. It was my first language but I have long since forgotten it. This blog is so helpful!! Mersi!!!

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