Easter traditions around the world.

Hi everyone.

Today I had the epitome of a BAD day. I swear absolutely NOTHING was going right today. I’m sure everyone experiences days like that from time to time, but this day hit me below the belt. I hardly did anything productive today because I felt so low ūüė¶ But let’s not dwell on the bad and move on to a more optimistic topic.

Easter is coming! I’m not sure how big of a deal this is in the rest of the world, but since I’m living in a Catholic country it’s a major deal. Schools are closed from Wednesday on; and although the working¬†community¬†has no such luck – everyone gets post-Easter Monday and Tuesday off.

Since I grew up travelling a lot I got to experience A LOT of different Easter traditions – and I thought it would be fun to share the ones I’m most familiar with.

Easter Sunday in most Catholic countries are pretty much the same. On Saturday (or Sunday) morning people take baskets of food to their church to be blessed or sprinkled with holy water. The aforementioned food is served on either Sunday morning or evening and both meals are big family affairs. Although each tradition differs somewhat, the real fun comes on Monday morning.

Traditional Easter foods:

A traditional Polish Easter brunch

A hungarian beigli - - a sweet cake with a ground walnut or poppy-seed filling rolled up in the shape of a Swiss roll (really delicious)

A Czech Mazanec - a sweet light bread made with raisins almonds and lemon zest

In Hungary the boys and men start “touring” the neighborhood early in the morning. They knock on the doors of friends, family, acquaintances and when the women of the house answer the door, they get recited a pretty little poem and¬†sprinkled¬†with water or cologne. In turn the women are expected to “reward” the aforementioned men with sweets, painted eggs and alcohol. These festivities usually continue on into the evening . The girls end the day smelling a million different colognes and eager to wash their hair, while the men and boys are well fed and often more then a little loosed up (unfair much?)

Obviously, back in the day they took this a little more extreme ūüėõ

In Czech Republic the tradition is even more odd. The boys and men of the neighborhood also go “touring”, but with specially designed whips made of out young willow twigs and decorated with pretty ribbons (like that makes them hurt any less). They go knocking on doors and the girls are expected to come out and¬†obediently¬†be whipped by the menfolk. This proceedure is supposed to make them beautiful and youthful. But wait, it gets better, the menfolk are also rewarded with sweets, alcohol and in rare cases even money. Thankfully this slightly sadistic ritual only continues till noon, at which point the women can feel free to dump water on man looking to whip them, although ¬†in my experience no one has ever been brave enough.

Dont look painful - trust me it is!

In Poland they have what they call “wet Monday”.¬†Basically¬†there is a huge, nation wide water fight. Strangers dump buckets of water on¬†strangers, water balloons are dropped from apartment buildings. And water guns are common¬†accessories¬†on this day. I think this is the fairest of all the traditions (although I believe it originally started off as the men drenching the women).

PS: Don’t ask me where these strange traditions come from, because I honestly haven’t a clue.

Do you do anything extraordinary on Easter/Easter Monday?

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2 comments

  1. Ahhhhhhhhhh beigli!!!!!!!!!!!!!! My little ol’ Hungarian grandma makes THE BEST fricken beigli on the planet!!!!
    I love the dios beigli (walnut) just a teeny bit more than the makos (poppy seed) but not by much. They are both heavenly. That, palacsinta, and almas pite are my faaaaaavorite Hungarian desserts! Oh, and a good langos topped with cheese and garlic oil never hurt either. Wow, I’m am just rambling now, but I’m sure you can imagine how excited I was when I saw the beigli. LOVE!
    Oh, and I remember all of my Hungarian family telling me about the perfume sprinkling tradition. This talk about Europe made me smile! ūüôā

  2. I love how traditions all over the world are so different! My family aren’t all that religious so we don’t do the church thing but we always use Easter as an excuse to come together as a family and have a big meal together.

    I would love to experience Easter in other countries like you have. That Czech bread looks amazing!!

    xxx


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