This time Elisa and I drank some coffee, tea & chocolate cake and we talked about something that really interest me: Finnish traditions. First, I taught Elisa about some Dutch traditions and after that she told me about Finnish traditions. It’s funny that the traditions are so different but also a little bit the same.
The first Finnish tradition we talked about was Loppiainen or Epiphany. This takes place on the 6th of January. This is basically the day when they take their Christmas decorations away.
Palm Sunday takes place the Sunday before Easter. On this day kids dress up as witches and the pick out a tree branches. The kids decorate the tree branches with feathers. They will go from door to door to say a poem to wish the people good health. In exchange for saying that poem they will get some candy. This holiday kind of reminds me of the Dutch holiday Sint Maarten.
Vappu is on the 1st of May, but the celebration last for a week. This is a communistic celebration. In Tampere there is a market at central square. During this holiday there is also a lot of nonsense stuff like a lot of balloons and fart pillows. A lot of people will drink champagne and make their own sima. There is also a lot of food like Munkkis.
Last eve of April
On the last eve of April, a lot of young people will go out and drink all night. They always put a hat on the maid of Finland statue.
Juhannus is an ancient Finnish holiday. It always takes place on the Saturday between the 20th and 26th of June. The main festivals during this holiday take place on Thursdays. A lot of Finnish people will go to their cabins in the forest and celebrate it over there. In Tampere there is a festival called Underground Midsummer. There is always a bonfire and there are dances. For example, the midsummer dance. There is also a myth that if you put seven different flowers on your pillow, you will see your future husband in your dreams. This is something some of the younger girls do.
All Saints day
This day takes place on the 1st of November. A lot of people go to the cemetery this day to light a candle.
Independence Day – Suomi sata
Finnish Independence Day is on the 6th of December. This year it’s a really special year for Finland, because Finland exists 100 years this year. In 1917 was the independence of Finland from the Russian republic. Before being a part of Russia, Finland was a part of Sweden. During Independence Day there will be a reception where the president and famous people shake hands.
New Year’s Eve
On the 31th of December it’s New Year’s Eve in Finland. This means fireworks and getting drunk. Some people will melt a horseshoe and the shape will predict the next year.
It was really interesting to hear about the Finnish holidays and traditions. Like I said before, some of them I celebrate as well, but there are also a few holidays I have had never heard of before.