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CHRISTMAS AROUND THE WORLD
22 December 2017
I received my annual greeting from Compassion, Intl, with whom I have sponsored 15 children for many years. They shared with sponsors some Christmas traditions around the world that I thought might be interesting.
On Christmas Eve in Haiti, children place their newly cleaned shoes, filled with straw, under the tree on the porch. They hope that Santa (called Tonton Nwèl) will remove the straw and put presents in and around the shoes.
The Night of the Radishes (Noche de Rábanos in Spanish) is an annual event held in the city of Oaxaca, Mexico, where people carve oversized radishes into nativity scenes, with the best ones receiving prizes.
Christmas trees in Indonesia are normally artificial ones made of plastic. But another special type of Indonesian Christmas tree is made from chicken feathers, handmade by the people of Bali. These feather trees are exported to countries around the world.
Ethiopians follow the ancient Julian calendar, which means that they celebrate Christmas on Jan. 7. Families dress in white garments called shammas that they wear to Christmas services.
Children in Brazil receive gifts from Papai Noel on Christmas Eve. With no use for chimneys in the tropical climate, they believe Papai Noel enters via the front door, and travels via helicopter rather than a reindeer-drawn sleigh.
In Kenya, Santa doesn’t arrive with his reindeer but instead rolls into town on an SUV, camel or a bike.
There is no such thing as a “silent night” during Christmas in El Salvador! The streets are filled with children burning firecrackers, and as the night goes on the sparklers move on to large Roman candle displays.
The Giant Lantern Festival (Ligligan Parul Sampernandu) is held each year on the Saturday before Christmas Eve in the city of San Fernando – the “Christmas Capital of the Philippines.” Eleven villages take part in the festival and competition is fierce as everyone pitches in trying to build the most elaborate lantern.
Bolivians celebrate Misa del Gallo (“Mass of the Rooster”) on Christmas Eve, with people bringing roosters to midnight mass to symbolize the belief that a rooster was the first animal to announce the birth of Jesus Christ.
I was determined to get started on Christmas cookies. Why, I don't know since Walt and I certainly don't need them and there is nobody else here...but there will be Jeri and Phil here on Sunday, and I'd like to have a choice of cookies for them. I got a late start, so only baked one batch, good ol' chocolate chip.
But I hope to make two more types tomorrow.
Three will make a nice assortment, as long as I can stay away from the
freezer, where I am storing them!
PHOTO OF THE DAY
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