Oh here it comes – Christmas Season, the happiest days of the year and I’ve been thinking of a unique top 10 list for this season.
I’ve been wondering what is like celebrating Christmas outside ‘Philippines’? Sad to say, this is what I found out!
Regardless of the reality that most of us celebrate Christmas with all of its pleasures and gift not to mention the joy it brings to everyone just by the thought of it, there are some places that do miss all of the Christmas spirit of Santa Claus and his reindeer, Christmas tree, hearing Christmas carols and lots of delicious evening food – I mean these places do literally interprets ‘No such thing as Christmas’.
Certainly in Tokyo you find a giant robotic Santa, but most likely he will only hint at the classic Christmas in this country.
Holiday connected with the infant Jesus, there does not exist as the country is not Christian. But the Japanese love to have fun twisted it in his own way, actually turning it into a … Valentine’s Day!
Just imagine a Valentine Santa.
Doesn’t it sound funny? The most popular sweets for December 24 becomes a huge cake that every self-respecting man presents the woman he loves.
Lovers must go to a restaurant, and children are not left alone but rather with gifts received- toys and candy.
It is also considered fashionable to rent a room in an expensive hotel and spend a romantic night over there.In addition, the bustle of the shops gives Japanese a custom to give gifts to each other at the end of the year.
To do so, even there is a special industry: in the store, it is enough to reach the shelf where we can find presents laid of various amounts, so you choose the one that is of your desired sum and content, to fill in a form with the recipient’s address and pay for purchases at the checkout.
The rest will be done by the store: putting the gift in a beautiful paper, making a card and delivering to the recipient.
If you like the story of Grinch who stole Christmas, and always wanted to ban the celebration, go to Saudi Arabia as its one of the best places to do so.
In the most conservative Muslim country of the world the birth of baby Jesus is not celebrated, and sometimes persecute those who try to do it.
The religious police periodically withdraw from stores thematic holiday’s greeting cards, and customs at the airport – Christmas ornaments. It sounds so awful, isn’t it?
The denial of any other religions in the country comes to the point that even aircraft are prohibited from flying over Mecca.
For the simple reason that the shadow of the liner has a cross shape and fell to Kabbah, can defile it, so this sounds to be such a pity for the Christian popularity of the country which is a minority.
Well, the flag of the country which has a moon and a star on it speaks up of itself.
Those who want quiet Christmas meet in Algeria do not pursue, but in the country, 99% of which adhere to Islam, this holiday is celebrated not accepted and some of it may still seem like an insult to Islam.
For example, when a couple of years ago, reindeer, harnessed to a sleigh, carrying a Santa Claus, suddenly appeared on the main street of the Algerian capital, some passers-by a desire to pounce on the masks with his fists.
Although the alleged eyewitnesses, in recent years in the country have become very popular Christmas cookies and the only Christian in the parish of the country, even spend the festive liturgy.
But other signs of Christmas here to search are not worth it and its better not to organize something as it might be very dangerous.
Despite the fact that the Iranian streets still are caught indecently dressed women, and along with the men who dared to something to stand out from the crowd, religious taboos in the country is not as strong as it is expected to be.
In some places they even arrange “Christmas” sales; well of course the store managers explain it with the fact of the end of the year.
Typical picture is a showcase of expensive clothes shores, where there are mannequins in traditional Hijab, but right next to it is a hug amount of sparkling Christmas tree lights.
Perhaps this is due to the fact that it was from Persia, two thousand years ago, that 3 Wisemen came to welcome the birth of blessed son, and therefore completely ignoring the holiday does not work.
Once in Thailand, you are likely to simply forget that this is the time for Christmas, and at the same time New Year.
It is difficult to think about the Christmas tree and Santa Claus, when the temperature is increasing on the street up to 30 degrees, and instead of snowing outside the window, all you can see is a sparkling warm emerald sea.
Of course, the hotels always organize a special dinner, but if you go to the city, it turns out that it lives the usual bustling about Christmas and nobody thinks about it.
However, Thais are not always averse of celebrating; even the public holidays here are 14, almost twice as much as in some of the countries.
So, for example, the local schoosl may be visited by elephants, dressed in red and white caps, and make a presentation to the distribution of gifts.
And in Bangkok, you can admire the Santa made of condoms, which is not the first year to be presented next to the entrance of one of the restaurants as a symbol of the fight against AIDS.
If the tourist part of India at Christmas is all shining with the glittering garlands, and the windows are decorated with small Christmas trees, then in neighboring Nepal on a holiday there’s nothing to remind anyone about the Christmas spirit present here except of the date on your mobile phone.
At 12 o’clock at night in the city will be as dark and quiet as nowhere else in the world, and local residents will sleep, not even knowing that in many countries at this time the street lights are burning and there is a flowing crowd of many thousands of people.
The country inhabitants even travel to the neighboring countries to take part in glamorous parties of the Christmas.
As in many Muslim countries, Turkey is not widely spread custom to meet Christmas, but Turks are rather religiously tolerant.
The country is hosting a lot of Christian population to meet Christmas in some of their resort places.
There are many cases where the first Muslim neighbors graciously accept from Christian neighbors Easter eggs, and then those same neighbors are Christians happily eat rah-at delight at the day, which marks the end of Ramadan.
But, according to recent studies of Turkish scholars, the tradition of prank up the tree just came from ancestors of the Turks.
True, they decked it on 22 December, the winter solstice, which is esteemed by them as a “feast of rebirth. A Christmas tree is, in turn, was considered a “tree of life”.
It also happens that the policy is stronger than religion and everything that is happening in that country is all controlled by the police.
For example, in North Korea the only person to celebrate Christmas is the great secrecy, because the only permissible holidays are gone birthday of Kim Il Sung and now Kim Jong Il’s ruling.
So you just cannot have any kind of parties for that day to be associated with any kind of Christmas traditions.
Yes, and calendar here is not on the birth of Christ, but from the birth of Kim Il Sung. However, the chance to get a tourist in Korea is very small.
And this year the country is, in principle, closed its borders from November to mid January.
Christmas in China is not officially celebrated, but the tradition to decorate anything and everything on the eve of the festival has established itself here as a presentation of the year.
Though even the New Year celebrated here is different from the one celebrated in Western countries.
Even palm trees are getting decorated and waiters of the restaurants and shops sellers often put on the red and white caps.
What really is surprising? This country is more than half of Christmas toys for the whole world and of course, such abundance, combined with a love of Chinese to bright colors, could not affect the local traditions.
Many tropical island excluding ‘Philippines’
And you can just rent any suitable tropical island or visit one of them if the financial afford allow you to do so.
Proposals, launched with about 10 000 dollars per week are good enough.
Oh, this is the place where Santa Claus with his reindeer presents and other Christmas tinsel just does not get to.
Though “Philippines” – was exempted since the country has the world’s longest and happiest Christmas which starts September – “BER” months and follows all the way through January’s “Candelaria” or blessings of the candles celebration.