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8 Quirky Ways the World Celebrates Christmas

Yes it's that time of year again - Christmas! If you're like me, you're already humming Christmas carols and counting down the 36 days, but I do know there will some scrooges out there groaning at just the sight of this blog post. 

Here in the UK a traditional Christmas day generally is filled with family and presents, with a Turkey dinner with all the trimmings served up in the evening. This isn't the norm for everyone though, as across the world Christmas is celebrated very differently. Even in Spain where some of our team work, the 3 Kings on the 6th of January is when most festivities are celebrated.

christmas.jpg

 

Here are 8 quirky Christmas traditions that we love:

 

1. Kentucky Fried Christmas

In Japan, the traditional Christmas meal is a bucket of KFC! Although only 1% of the population are practising Christians, this originates from when tourists visited the country and could not find chicken in many restaurants.

 

2. Rolling in to Christmas morningalt

In Caracas, Venezuela it is customary to attend church services in the morning, as it is in a lot of the world. However, most residents travel there on roller skates! The roads are even closed off for safety measures.

 

 

3. Hide your brooms

In Norway, Christmas Eve is thought to be a night in which evil spirits and witches visit the mortal world. Everyone locks up all their brooms and similar tools to avoid them being stolen by the witches!

 

4. The Christmas Spider

In addition to the traditional baubles on tinsel placed on a Christmas tree, Ukranian residents decorate their tree with twinkling spider webs. This originates from the story of an elderly lady who was too ill to decorate her tree one year. The following morning, she awoke to discover spiders had decorated her tree top to bottom. 

 

5. Whats wrong with sprouts?!mattak-xmas-food.jpg

In Greenland the Christmas delicacy is slightly difference to the traditional brussel sprout; Mattak and kiviak - mattak consisiting of raw whale skin with a little blubber, and the latter is made my wrapping a small artic bird in seal skin, burying it for months and then eatings its decomposed flesh - nice!

 

 

 

6. Weird Welsh Wandering

In some remote towns in Wales, the ritual of the Mari Lwyd is performed. A resident is chosen to parade the streets with a mare's skull fastened to the end of a wooden pole whist singing traditional songs. 

 

7. Christmas wedding bells

Women in the Czech Republic perform a ritual based around one of my favourite things - shoes! Unmarried women stand with their back to the front door and hurl a shoe over their shoulder and if the toes land facing the door, they will be wed within the year. 

 

Noche Radishes Oaxaca

8. Radishing Christmas

On December the 23rd in Oaxaca, Mexico, residents head to the town square to carve radishes.