Christmas is a pretty important day to a lot of people. If you’re celebrating it for religious reasons, you’re probably recreating the scene where Mary and Joseph have to take shelter in a manger with a nativity scene in your home.
If you’re celebrating it as a more secular, commercial holiday then you’re probably doing what Santa does and making a list and checking it twice. Though you probably don’t care who’s naughty or nice because the people on your list are people you have to get nice gifts for regardless of how you feel about their moral compasses.
But there’s one person you really want to make the day special for, and that’s that woman from Colombia that you met online and started dating. You want to get her a nice gift, but beyond that, you just want the day overall to be as special as possible for her.
Colombia’s got a few Christmas traditions of its own and observing them might go a long way towards making your girl feel special on Christmas day and during the holiday season in general.
How do Colombians celebrate Christmas? Well, there’s a holiday tradition that takes place on the 7th of December. It’s when people in Colombia light candles and paper lanterns. They place them on windowsills and balconies and they use them to decorate streets and public parks. This marks the beginning of the proper Christmas season, though some people might start celebrating it a little earlier.
If you’re celebrating in Colombia, stop to admire the displays. If you’re not in Colombia and zoning laws prevent you from observing this tradition to its fullest, you can still observe in your own home, which may not be the same but it’s still something.
The day before Christmas is one of the highlights of the season. While Christmas Eve may be seen as a transitory period, an unwelcome opening act to the main event, it’s a celebration unto itself in Colombia. Large families gather for a nochebuena, which is a Christmas feast that’s held on Christmas Eve. The tradition comes from Spain and is widely practiced in former Spanish colonies.
One dish that’s popular in Colombia is the lechona, a roast pig that has been stuffed with vegetables, rice, and spices. It’s slow cooked hours and hours beforehand, so it’s not just something that you can whip up on the spot.
If you intend on having some variation of this, then you need to start making preparations at least a week beforehand to get the ingredients you need but also to invite people you’re comfortable inviting. Your Colombian woman is sure to appreciate the gathering.
Because of all the celebrations that precede it, Christmas Day itself is pretty chill for Colombians. Because of all the eating and celebrating the night before, people are either in a full food coma or they’re hungover. That, or they’re just plain tired.
In any case, they’re not inclined to go all out for any kind of celebration on the day of.
If you live on a suburban street, you probably have a neighbor that goes all out with their holiday decorations. Maybe they got realistic corpses for Halloween and a giant cornucopia replica for Thanksgiving.
But that neighbor probably goes all out for Christmas. Maybe they got Santa on the roof. Maybe they got a Christmas tree taller than their actual house out on their lawn. The point is that their decorations are so extravagant that maybe their lights can be seen all the way up in the International Space Station.
But you’re with a woman from Colombia now and they do things a little differently down south. Colombia is known for extravagant holiday decorations. Whole city streets find themselves draped in Christmas lights. Which means that your partner is probably going to expect something similar. Or if she doesn’t expect it, she’s probably used to it. So you’re going to have to step your up game and create a tapestry that puts your neighbor to shame.
Now, if you are already that neighbor, you’re good. Your decorations are probably already in line with what she’s used to. Your power bill might spike, but whatever. Happy (would be) wife, happy life.
Pretty much everywhere that Christmas is celebrated, people give their loved ones gifts. Now, you can get her something really nice. Something really special.
It doesn’t have to be expensive, but just imagine the smile on her face when she opens the box and sees that thing that you undoubtedly put a lot of thought into. It’ll show her how much time you spend thinking about her.
The predominant religion of Colombia is Catholicism because when Spain was out colonizing large parts of the world, they–like many imperialist European powers–did so with the justification of Gold, God, and Glory. Make money, spread religion, and gain prestige. Spain was pretty successful with spreading Catholicism.
Because of how successful Spain was, Christmas is celebrated as a religious holiday in Colombia. So expect a trip to the nearest Catholic church or two. Your partner will probably feel like the season is incomplete without the religious parts of it.
She might also pray a novena nine days before Christmas itself. That’s the novena of the Aguinaldos and it’s supposed to be hosted in a different home each night.
Christmas is one of the most widely celebrated holidays in the world. But it means different things to different people. Some people see it as a day of romance. Some see it as a holy day. Others, particularly children, see it as a day where they get a whole stack of new toys.
It can be all those things. Or it can be none of them. It just has to be special and when you’re dating a Colombian woman, it’s almost guaranteed to be special in one way or another.
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