First and foremost, I want to wish everyone a very merry Christmas. I love this time of the year and our Swedish traditions, but to honor the day I thought I actually write about interesting traditions from around the world.
Did you know that as many as two billion people celebrate Christmas each year?
In Venezuela, they turn off the streets from traffic on Christmas Eve. This is to make room for everyone who will be skating to church.
Japanese are generally not Christians, and they are thus not celebrating Christmas as we do. But a tradition that took off in the late seventies after a famous commercial, has become a tradition. On Christmas Eve many Japanese families eat dinner at the American fast food chain KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken).
It is actually so popular that it’s fully booked several weeks in advance.
Anyone who wants to clean up on Christmas Eve must do it without a broom. According to an old tradition in Norway, one must hide all the brooms because otherwise witches and other evil spirits could get a hold of them and fly around.
“Tio de Nadal” which is also known as the pooping log, is perhaps one of the Christmasy highlights of in Spanish Catalonia. A stock decorated with a face who then poop out the Christmas gifts. Weird? Hm, maybe a little… But it looks kind of fun!
Check out the video below and see what “Tio de Nadal” is all about.
Greenland has a rather different tradition when it comes to Christmas food. They don’t really eat sausages and meatballs if you say so. Instead, they are enjoying “Mattak” consisting of raw whale skin with blubber.
Another Specialty that you eat in Greenland is Kiviak, made of alkanes that are inserted into the sealskin and then ferment for 7 months.
In Germany, kids are hiding a pickle in the Christmas tree. The child who finds the pickle first will receive a small gift.
On Christmas Eve, Estonians enjoy a traditional sauna with the whole family gathered.
According to an old tradition in Slovakia, the man in the house will take a spoon full of Loksa (pudding) and throw it in the ceiling. The more Loksa that sticks in the ceiling, the better will the year’s harvest be.
If you watch all the movies you know that Americans love drinking alcohol and pub crawls. So, it may not come as a surprise that some Americans have created a new tradition where one dresses up as Santa Claus, and of course; Go on a massive pub crawl!
That’s it guys, now I’m about to eat some Swedish delicacies and enjoy the holidays. Merry Christmas everyone!