Christmas in Norfolk, England
I come from a large family who are spread out across Europe, so we meet up for a weekend in November to celebrate and I get to enjoy December with the smugness of having brought all my Christmas presents and a bucket full of turkey and roast potatoes in my belly. This years festivities were the usual melee of feasting, tea drinking and restraining five eager children from attacking the stash under the tree. The task of feeding the five-thousand (in fact only seventeen, even though the number of pigs in blankets might suggest otherwise) is rotated each year to avoid anyone collapsing under the pressure of delivering the most important meal of the year! It’s also hilarious, ridiculously fun, incredibly tiring but most of all it’s what Christmas is all about to me – family (and food…)
By Tizzy Mann
Christmas in Colombia, South America
Colombians take Christmas very serious, it is seen as a festive time where family and friends gather to enjoy each other’s presence and good energy. In my town, it is almost traditional to close most of our roads so that our neighbours can gather in their neighbourhoods and enjoy a vast amount of traditional food! We also tend to stay up all night partying, but this is nothing compared to how we party for New Year’s which often lasts 3 nights. We have fireworks, Christmas lights, and festive music to last throughout the whole of December.
By Brandon Londono
Christmas lights over the river in Medellin, Colombia.
Christmas in Essex, England
It seems that our lives get busier and busier every year. For me, Christmas is one of the only times a year when I know that my whole family will be together. Although I am not a Christian, I think Christmas is about reaching out to friends both absent and current and it inspires me to try to be a better person. I want to roast chestnuts by an open fire, I want to feel that crunch under my feet when I walk in the snow, I want to greet carol singers at my door and spend a few moments enjoying their harmonies. This is a little taste of my English Christmas.
By David Hayhow
Christmas in Spain
In Spain, however, Christmas is a bit different. For our European neighbours, the Christmas period officially starts on December 22nd, with the National Christmas Lottery. On this day, everyone gathers around their TV at home or at cafés with friends and family to watch it live, with the hope of ending the year a little bit richer than how they started it.
After this, Santa Claus, or Papá Noel, as they call him over there, makes his big appearance on the night of the 24th. This is a night when families get together to eat, drink and enjoy the company of the loved ones. Depending on the families, he might or might not leave some presents for the little ones by the end of the night.
But there is not time to rest! On the 25th, everyone gathers again for lunch – because we all know that mum’s food always tastes better the day after!
By Aída Martín
Stay tuned in for the second half of our team’s Christmases next week! The post will be describing the cultural differences we have throughout the festive season of Christmas.