Between Christmas trees, punch and gifts…
… throughout the whole world you’ll find: Christmas celebrations.
Not all at the same time, often not on the same day and definitely not with the same weather conditions!
While in Austria we hope for a white Christmas, in Australia it’s customary to open presents in glowing sunshine on the beach! In culinary terms, we’re likewise very different. While we definitely crave our carp, the Aussies prefer to eat turkey, or they organize a barbecue on the beach.
You can find interesting insights into customs and culinary practices throughout the world here.
For all their differences, all of the celebrations have one thing in common: It should be a festivity for everyone. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a child, woman or man. Mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, cousins, great-grandparents: Everybody participates!
Whether it’s a large circle or a lone couple, Christmastime is always something special.
Some odd things are all part of it:
Have you ever heard of the town called Gällivare in Sweden? There, the Santa Claus Winter Games takes place every year. Santa Clauses gather from all over the world and have to prove their “skill” in various disciplines.
Of course, the pre-Christmas period is the same for me as for so many others: Meetings for punch and mulled wine are planned, gifts still have to be purchased, I should also pick out a Christmas tree – and why is so much happening everywhere anyway? But STOP.
Isn’t Christmas supposed to be a time for contemplation? Aren’t you supposed to take time for your loved ones during Christmas? We all know this in theory, yet in practice I sometimes have the feeling that we’re all just running around to get everything quickly so that on December 24, 2012 we can say, totally exhausted, “Done!”
That’s really a shame, since Christmas is so much more….
To be able to enjoy this time more, you can visit a Christmas market, for example; by doing so you’ll combine presents, punch, the Christmas tree and friends. With mulled wine or punch you’ll also get to relax some.
You can find tips on the most beautiful Christmas markets in Vienna in an article by my colleague Daniela Hirschl here.
In this spirit, I wish you merry festivities and a wonderful holiday.