All over the world, people celebrate Christmas in various ways. Not in all countries, Christmas is about dining with the family, opening gifts, and singing Christmas carols together.
The Woman Post | Carolina Rodríguez Monclou
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Eating KFC as a Christmas meal has become a widespread custom in Japan. Thanks to a successful KFC campaign, the Japanese now enjoy this meal in December. They do not celebrate Christmas because of its religious connotations, as most Japanese are not Christian. Instead, it is seen as a typical day where couples can date and give each other gifts.
If Japan is decorated with Christmas trees and there are many Santas, it is for the marketing purpose behind this day. Young people generally enjoy strawberry shortcake with friends while adults go to work since it is not a holiday. One of the reasons behind the custom of eating KFC was that the company knew that turkey was not easy to buy for foreigners and Christians in Japan. Taking advantage of this opportunity, they launched a well-received campaign, and since then, the Japanese eat chicken at Christmas.
In the Philippines, the giant lantern festival is held each year on the Saturday before Christmas Eve in San Fernando. Due to the popularity of the festival, the city has been dubbed the Christmas capital of the Philippines.
The festival attracts spectators from all over the country and the world. Eleven villages participate in the festival and the competition is fierce as they all rush to build the most elaborate lantern. Initially, the lanterns were simple creations of around 18 inches in diameter made from Japanese origami paper and lit by a candle. Today, lanterns are made of various materials and have grown to 20 feet in size; electric bulbs glow in the kaleidoscope of patterns.
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Since 1996, a 13-meter tall Yule goat has been built in the center of Yahweh Sweden's Castle Square for Advent, and every year someone tries to burn it, which has become a tradition in itself. The avid goat has become famous for being destroyed in arson attacks. Despite security measures and the nearby presence of a fire station, the goat has been burned to the ground for most years since its first appearance in 1966.
As of December 2020, the goat has been injured more than 37 times. Burning the goat is illegal and, if caught, carries a three-month prison term for aggravated property damage.
Like most places in the world that celebrate Christmas, the children of Central Europe have Saint Nicholas, who rewards children who are good with gifts. But they also have Krampus, who roams the streets of the city during the Christmas season, scaring children and punishing those who have not behaved so well.
Krampus is said to capture the naughtiest of children and take them south. In the first week of December, young people dress up as Krampus, scaring children with the noise of chains and bells.
Regardless of how you celebrate the season and your beliefs, The Woman Post wishes you Happy Holidays.