Zilele Babei Dochia / Zilele Babelor ( days of the old ladies) – forecast for the new year

In the ethnographic area of Botosani, March 1 to 9 are known today as the day of Old Lady Dochia or Old Lady Days – these are the days when Dochia dies symbolically and turns back to life at the beginning of March as, until the eighteenth century, the New Year used to be celebrated in spring . Dochia’s death, on March 9, symbolizes the death of the old year.
Many legends that are still found in Romanian mythology speak of an old woman who was ugly and wicked and who mercilessly persecuted her daughter-in-law, sending her to pick up berries and graze sheep in the cold winter days. This really highlights the conflict between the daughter and mother-in-law, and, on symbolic level, the opposition between the old time and new time. Old Lady Dochia represents the old year or the great goddess of earth who is defeated by her daughter-in-law, a young person, who is strong and has the support of God in all her good deeds – she represents the New Year.