Winter traditions in Azerbaijan and some difference with Romania
Every season has its own beauty. In autumn leaves fall down and while walking on the wet ground watching at these leaves makes you feel the beauty of autumn. After 3 months autumn gives its turn to winter, that is more different than other seasons. With white and different shape of snow not enjoying with the amenity of winter is impossible.
Meanwhile, it would be better to mention that, every country has different kind of traditions in every season. For example, except from other Christian countries, in Azerbaijan people do not celebrate Christmas holiday, due to being a Muslim country. However, in winter elder people gather their children, grandchildren to their home, give some advice to young family. It is a tradition in winter to prepare different kind of traditional meals and eat them with the relatives. Even grandparents ask riddle to grandchildren and reward with tiny gifts who answers quickly as much as they can. In the village people do not use gas to heat the house, they use coal and the smell of burning coal inspires to stay at home in winter eat, talk with your relations.
Like other countries in Azerbaijan people also celebrate New Year holiday. They take their family, go to city center, and watch concert and fireworks.
Romania is a rich country when it comes to traditions and superstitions. Modern Romanians only keep a few of them, but many of the old traditions can be discovered in the countryside, in remote areas of the country. In Romania children go caroling on Christmas Eve.
Actually, in Bucharest and in other cities they start long before that, as they try to go to as many houses as possible. If you live in a block of flats, chances are you'll be visited by carolers as early as the beginning of December. Not only children go caroling. Groups of students – usually theology students, with beautiful voices- start caroling sometime in the second half of December. Carolers usually expect small food and beverage goodies - fruits, nuts, cookies, glasses of wine for adult carolers - in exchange for their performances. Nowadays kids usually settle for money, 5 or 10 lei should be enough.
Besides, I would like to write about some winter traditions that I experienced newly. As a volunteer and person it was the first time I celebrated Christmas and first New Year holiday I celebrated abroad. Talking about Christmas I want to cite that, I met with some international volunteers and celebrated the holiday together. The most interesting thing was that, I learned different traditions from those volunteers. There were German, Danish, French and Latvian volunteers and they were describing some traditions from their country. For example, the Latvian volunteer showed us a simple tradition that they have in their country. She made us to make candle from basic stuffs and did not allow setting fire. She said people set fire on this candle when they feel worse and to avoid negativity fire is set on. From these pictures you can see those candles.
Also I took part in a New Year holiday concert and fireworks in Romania. One of the differences from Azerbaijan New Year holiday celebration was selling hot drinks next to a concert area. For example, having hot wine during the concert time was a good idea, it was keeping people’s body so warm under cold weather.
In conclusion, as an Azerbaijani celebrating New Year and Christmas, meeting different kind of winter and holiday traditions was a great experience in my life.