When I did my first Sunday Stills post last week, Strawberry Lane directed me to http://sundaystills.wordpress.com/ where I found that the reason people post Sunday Stills photos is that they’re taking part in a Photography Challenge every week – d’oh!
This week’s challenge is Hallowe’en – how is Hallowe’en celebrated in your part of the world?
Well, I’ve never been in France for Hallowe’en before, but it’s been abundantly clear over the last couple of weeks that they don’t celebrate it at all – or not as we know it, anyway.
No witches or ghouls, no fireworks or bonfires, no peanuts or pumpkin carving (that’s actually an Irish tradition, y’know, we used to carve turnips in bygone days). No kids in fancy dress, no goody bags, no scary skeleton decorations, no Hallowe’en party games like dunking for coins or apples.
None of that stuff. Instead of that, La Toussaint (All Saints Day) is a holy day and Public Holiday.
The quintessential symbol of this Holiday is the humble Chrysanthemum – so much so, that the big supermarket in Apt, LeClerc, has this announcement on the doors as you go in :
|Arrival of the Chrysanthemums Your shop will be closed on Thurs Nov 1st|
Apt Market, a colourful affair at the best of times, has gone Chrysanthemum Crazy, with brightly coloured blooms everywhere.
Next Thursday, all of these bright displays will be placed on the graves of loved ones and people will pause a while to remember those they’ve lost.
Yes, it’s different here.
Massive Faux Pas to avoid : If you’re visiting a French person and want to bring flowers, don’t ever, ever bring Chrystanthemums.