Autumn Celebrations From All around the World

What a beautiful time of the year! I was always a little bit in love with the fall… the leaves are changing, the weather is becoming colder and an atmosphere of new beggings is in the air. But another thing that I really adore about Autumn is the different traditions and celebrations that anyone can find around the world.

Now my lucky readers, I will move a bit northern, but in general close to our beautiful Italy. We are going to visit the known to all Germany and talk about the Oktoberfest celebration, which is really something worth writting for… So, inside the European borders, in Germany they host a big festival with the duration of 16-18 days and which starts at mid- late September until the first week of October. People from all around the world arriving in Munich to the biggest European Beer Festival. The event originated in 1810, when the citizens of Munich were invited to celebrate the marriage of Crown Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen. As anyone can understand in a weeding celebration there is a need for food, music, dancing and of course a lot of beer! This is the way that they keep celebrating the OktoberFest so many years after the actual marriage and it seems like it became a worldwide tradition that everyone has to try it at least one time in its life.

After Germany I will move around Europe again and we will visit England. I really enjoy the Victorian England and the stories around it, so I am pretty happy that we are going to talk a little bit about this island. Let’s say ”Remember, remember the 5th of November” because we are going to talk about the 5th of November in 1605. This was the day that a groups of catholics, Guy Fawkes and 12 other people, made a failed attempt to blow up King James I of England during the opening of Parliament in 1605, which came to be known as “The Gunpowder Plot.” But in early November Guy Fawkes got caught and the plan felt apart. On that night, bonfires were set alight to celebrate the safety of the King. Since then, every 5th of November the British people are celebrating with bonfires and fireworks. It’s also a nice opportunity to try some traditional bonfire foods like baked potatoes, toffee apples and marsmallows that they serve in this fest every year.

Now, let’s travel further away to the colorful and full of life India. Every autumn in India they celebrate the ”Festival of lights” or ”Diwali”, which is a celebration of abundance and light over darkness. They offer 5 days in October or November and they are lighting oil lamps and candles around their houses, setting off colorful fireworks, designing vibrant patterns of sand, and shoping for gifts. Another thing that they do is to pray for good luck to Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth.

Are you ready for some dead people celebration? Yes, you may guess it right, we are in Mexico now and we are celebrating ”Dia de los Muertos” or ”The Day of the Deads”. The two first days of November in Mexico they believe that the dead are coming back to life just for a night and they are organising a big celebration about them. This festival might seem to you a little dark and macabre, but in reality is the opposite of it. It seems like a celebration of life. Mexicans are putting on colorful costumes, they are drinkins and dancing in parades and decorating their homes with painted skulls. Also regarding their dead friends and family members, they use to visiting their graves, leave them flowers and food and praying for them.

I hope that you will find the chance to visit all these beautiful and special in their own way festivals. Either of them you will choose, I am pretty sure that you will have the time of your life and the only things that you will need is all your positive energy and your biggest smile!

 

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M.E.I Music Festival in Faenza

Hello my lucky readers,

I can’t believe that I am already a week in Faenza, the time passes by really quick here…

I am currently working in the S.E.MI organization as a volunteer and every day I feel really lucky for this opportunity that the European Union has given to me. We have different activities, creative office hours and italian lessons so we will can interact with the local community really soon. In this way, the days of the week are full of new things to do and learn untill the weekend comes and it’s the proper time for… party!

I am from Greece -as you already know my little readers- and one of the things that we know to do best, is party! I finished work at Friday afternoon and I was ready to go home, eat and then going out to discover the nightlife of Faenza. The thing that I didn’t expected was the music that was played in all the city center.

What was that?

After a quick walk in the center of the town I realized that there was a music festival for independet and alternative artists, M.E.I Music Festival. The setting was perfect! There was like 4 or 5 different stages with all kinds of music and for all the ages. At the main square, Piazza del popolo, anyone could find a book market that also had second hand books – perfect things for me given that I am trying to learn italian so I could use an old book for practice- and they had a market with handmade clothes and accessories, too. The demons of consumerism inside me went like crazy and I think I lost a little bit in this small makret, I TOOK A LOT OF THINGS!

The next day, Saturday, the setting was the same but the musicians kept changing and offered all kinds of music to listen, dance and forget the stress from the week that passed. The streets of Faenza was full of people and the city was beautiful in every part of her, like she was wearing her best costume!

As it comes for me and my attitude this weekend, I tried to enjoy every little part of this festival. I am still pretty new in this town and I want to try all kinds of new staff, like tradition foods -PIZZA, PIZZA, PIZZA- and drinks. So, I did it, I ate a pizza, I drunk a spritz and I was happily dancing in the sounds of every band that we were meeting in the little streets of Faenza.

Untill the next time, Ciao…

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Ragazzi… ci siamo costituite!

Prima o poi dovevamo confessare, certe cose non le puoi tenere dentro troppo a lungo e quindi… abbiamo aperto un’associazione!

Non è stato un processo doloroso, e nemmeno lungo (grazie a Marzia e Denise di Per gli altri che ci hanno risolto tutte le questioni burocratiche). Ma forse è così che si fanno le cose a 30 anni: ci pensi, ti piace, lo fai.

Ci chiamiamo SE.M.I. (Seeds for More Interculture), siamo un’associazione di volontariato e vogliamo organizzare attività culturali e interculturali, creative e sociali, locali e internazionali.

Perché?

Perché le nuove idee nascono dal confronto e dal dialogo, perché la diversità è una grande ricchezza.

Perché il linguaggio e gli idiomi non costituiscano una barriera ma uniscano persone e siano strumento di cooperazione.

Perché il dialogo interculturale e la cittadinanza europea sono centrali nella nostra società in divenire.

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Domenica 2 Ottobre saremo in Piazza del Popolo a Faenza a girellare tra gli stand e presentare il nostro progetto!

Per saperne di più e/o collaborare: elisa.emiliani.86 @ gmail.com [presto avremo un’email ufficiale, promesso!]

stay tuned 😉