Today Christmas (ganna) is being celebrated in Ethiopia. Because over half of the population is Orthodox Christians there, they go by the Julian Calendar. This puts today (the day of Epiphany) as the day to celebrate Christ's birth!
Very exciting to think about that beautiful country celebrating. I hope one day we can be over there to watch the festivities commence. Though I understand they celebrate more at Easter than Christmas, it would still be a good time.
This Saturday we're having family over to celebrate with us. We're hoping to make it an annual thing to continue to link Tariku with his culture.
We've saved some coffee beans from Ethiopia to roast. I'll be making doro wot, injera, lentil stew and homemade pizza. The pizza is for a couple reasons 1) it's Tariku's favorite "American" (one could argue it's Italian) food, so I thought we could join the cultures and 2) there are a few in our inner circle who dry heave when they eat Ethiopian food...party poopers. :)
During ganna (we're combining ganna and timkat celebrations, by the way) they don't exchange gifts but do drink homemade wine and beer all day. Which sounded good to me.
They also play a traditional game called...you guessed it, ganna, that is a lot like our field hockey. So we'll be trying that a bit. The Ethiopians believe this game was played after Christ's birth in celebration, so I'll go with that.
Another tradition is to wear all white so our family will be in our traditional Ethiopian attire and I've asked guests to wear as much white as possible.
Lastly, from my "extensive research" (meaning, I googled it), I found the Ethiopians burn incense as legend has it the "wise man" that brought frankincense was in fact King Balthazar of Ethiopia. So I'm presently on the market for some oil frankincense.
Should be a good time, stay tuned for pictures!
Until then, Melkam Ganna!