As our both country celebrate Easter we wanted to comparate and explain our habits during this Holy day. In Finnish easter is “Pääsiäinen” and in french “Pâques”. Even if they have quite the same traditions we noticed some differences.
Nina told me that one of the festivities here is “virpominen”, when all the children in the neighborhood dress up like trulli, or witches, and carry brightly-decorated willow branches door-to-door to wish “vitsa”, or “Happy Easter!” to their neighbors, receiving candies or coins in return.
In France children only do that in Halloween. When it is Easter day, generally parents or grand parents hide some chocolate, usually Easter Bunnys, eggs or chicks, and children have to find them in the garden or in the house. The story is that bells go to Rome for Holy week that is why, for mourning, they don’t ring during this week and on Sunday they ring again and while they are coming back from Rome they drop chocolate eggs over gardens. I really loved thos celebration when I was a kid because it was nearly the only moment of the year I could eat lots of chocolate and it was very funny to look for chocolate.
However, in terms of cooking we eat the same meal which is a leg of lamb, most likely because it is the Christian tradition. In France, flageolets beans join the lamb, for starter we eat asparagus and for dessert, chocolat eggs, of course. Nina told me they have a special Finnish dessert called “mämmi”, made of rye, that you generally love or hate (she hates it).