It's Easter this weekend, and that usually means lots of chocolate, eggs, bunnies, chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies... you get the idea.
For many of us, it's also a very spiritual holiday that inspires a wide range of traditions and festivities. The more class trips we send to Europe, the more we've come to appreciate its diversity. Countries and communities across the continent use geography, ethnicity and history to interpret holidays like Easter very, very differently. Here are three particularly peculiar iterations:
1. Watch Your Step
In Corfu, Greece, the Saturday of Easter weekend is dedicated to "Pot Throwing", where citizens literally throw pots and pans into the street from their kitchen windows. The custom is said to be inspired by farming communities of old, who would discard their earthenware to welcome spring, a season that symbolizes renewal and the anticipation of a new harvest that ought to be gather in new pots.
2. Enough to Feed an Army
If you plan on spending Easter in Haux, France, you better like omelets. The town spends the holiday gathering as many as 5,000 eggs to cook an omelet large enough to feed 1,000 people. Apparently Napoleon spent time in Haux and loved their omelets so much that he ordered the town to make an omelet large enough to feed his army. The rest, as they say, is history.
3. A Real Who-done-it
If Netflix taught us anything, it's that Scandanavia has a real penchant for crime dramas. Case in point: in Norway, so many people use the Easter long weekend to catch up on the latest crime novel, or binge-watch the latest crime series, that there's a term for it: Påskekrim, or "Easter-Crime". Families will head up to the mountains to ski by day and watch the latest season of The Bridge by night. The tradition dates back to 1923, when a Norwegian publishing house had unprecedented success advertising their latest crime novels during the Easter long weekend. They ran with it, releasing new titles every Easter until the whole country caught on and virtually every media outlet started doing the same.