January 7th, yep! Historically Ethiopian Cristmas has been celebrated January 7th, and Ethiopians are not the only ones who do so, Russian orthodox and other orthodox celebrate Christmas on January 7. According to Wikipedia, when the Catholics moved further into Europe, traditions already practiced by the inhabitants were not adopted, but the day was, and December 25th became the day most of the world celebrates Jesus’ birth. For Gary and I it means we have 2 Christmases! We’re always here for Ethiopian Christmas, that makes 6 and we’re still counting!
It’s a very family oriented holiday here, and folks living abroad or far from home make every effort to be w the friends and loved ones for Christmas! Our friend, whose daughter is in her first year at the University, shared that she wouldn’t be coming home for Christmas, and that his wife would be sad… The first Christmas without her. We commiserated with him because Christmas just isn’t the same without the whole family. But it turns out, he had a surprise waiting for him when he got home, she was there! A pretty good joke, but all was forgiven as they were together!
A merry heart is good like a medicine!
Enjoying dessert at the posh Sheraton in Addis, the lobby and surrounds were very reminiscent of Christmas in the US. 20 ft high Christmas trees, and life size moving reindeer decorated the lobbies as children decked in red wearing Santa hats were every where. The pianist in the lobby played a mixture of Ethiopian songs, and a few traditional Christmas tunes, Deck the Halls, Silent Night and a few others. The only one whose attendence was totally absent from the festivities was Santa. There were no Santa’s listening to request while children bounced on one knee. No naughty children here (lol) (jk)!
Back in Awassa, sheep and goats are packed into taxis and cars to be prepared for Christmas dinner. We’ll be enjoying doro wat, beg tibs, hoppy juice, goman and more… Gotta go, we’re off to a Christmas dinner party and now I’m really hungry! I must remember to save room because we have another Christmas party tomorrow!