This year my Christmas was green, not white. There was sun, blue sky and palms. There was no Christmas tree but a pasltic snowman in the city center, a turkey for dinner, chocolate and paneton.
I was very excited to see how peruvians celebrate Christmas. I was bit disappointed to find out that the peruvian traditions here are not as rich as european ones… But it was still a beautiful and happy time.
The Christmas in peruvian cities, as everywhere else in the world, begins already in November. The main city square is full of lights and there are plastic Christmas trees popping out everywhere. This year there was even a plastic snowman in city center, just next to the palm! (unfortunetaly it vanished or ´melted´ before i managed to take a picture of it).
In December all around one can hear Christmas carrols. In Peru they are meant mostly for kids and they are sung by little kids. This is one of the most popular ones: Mi Burrito Sabanero.
The kids at schools are also prepering their nacimiento – the representation of the Christ´s birth.
And finally comes the night of 24th of December, the night of Noche Buena (Good Night). The families get together in the evening, and spend a good quality time chatting, laughing and just being together untill midnight. At midnight everybody gives everybody a hug and a kiss and the Christmas dinner begins. The obligatory dish for Noche Buena is a turkey, usually filled. (In Peru families often buy turkeys alive – so the day before the turkey must be killed… – it is not so easy, look here to see the guide :=) ). The piece of turkley is accompanied by corn, salad and patatos. Then comes the sweet part – chocolate (based on the real chocolate from the selva) and paneton, a special kind of cake.
The Christmas dinner often develops in the dancing party (as peruvians love to dance), and the families contumuos having fun with salsa and cumba until early morning.
This year´s Christmas had also a polish accent – the best polish ginger bread cookies and pierogi prepered by the best polish cook in Cajamarca 🙂