Although I believe the Christmas spirit is the same world wide, Christmas In Guyana has so many differences compared to my experience in New York.
Say goodbye to the winter wonderland. In Guyana it is always hot, so there’s no snowmen and no hopping out your bed in a Christmas themed onesie. The hot chocolate and cookies on Christmas morning seems pointless.Yet all these points seem minuscule when you realize that due to the weather fireplaces are obsolete, therefore, there’s no chimney for Santa. Way to ruin a child’s fantasy. Also due to the weather it’s impossible to even have an authentic tree for Christmas, since they don’t grow in Guyana’s tropical climate.
The food is a huge culture shock. Pepper pot, garlic pork and black cake are traditional Christmas food’s in Guyana. There are also pickled onions which most people are disgusted by, but I savor the thought. That’s a long way from gingerbread houses,cookies, cupcakes and hot chocolate. Although I do miss the sweet taste of candy canes hanging from the Christmas tree, I appreciate the opportunity to eat the food I grew up eating for Christmas as kid in Guyana.
This has to be the most mind boggling of all culture shocks. It isn’t necessarily a Christmas, but a New Years tradition. In New York there’s the famous new year’s countdown in times square, where celebrities preform and everyone, including tourists and locals gather to take part. Those who can’t attend can watch on T.V. However in Guyana things are a little different. In Guyana there are many religions but Christianity and Islam are dominant. Therefore, many people attend church to welcome New Years. GASP! yes I said Church. Usually my mom attends when we visit, however I prefer to start the new years with a drink in hand and family around. One can even say that this New York tradition is here to stay!
I’ll be leaving for Guyana on Saturday the 19th, so my last post will be Carry on essentials. I will try my best to get pictures of my trip for everyone to see where I learned the ways of the world .