Valentine’s Day is nowadays celebrated all around the world. This is done in so many interesting ways. Traditionally, we talk about chocolate and flowers. However, in so many cases traditions are much different than what you initially imagine. Some of the traditions below may come as quite a shock for you.
Heart On Your Sleeve – South Africa
Valentine’s Day in South Africa is quite traditional but there is an interesting twist. The younger girls follow Lupercalia, which is a pretty old Roman festival. This is when lover names are pinned to one’s sleeve. Even some men do it. Practically, you show your love by wearing the name of the person you care for on your sleeve.
Magic Love Rituals – Brazil
Dia dos Namorados (which translates into “Lovers’ Day”) is what is celebrated in Brazil on June twelth. This is when single women will perform simpatias. These are some little rituals allowing them to find a really good boyfriend or husband.
A pretty interesting tradition related to this can even be done by you in February. Write all the names of the crushes you have on some papers. Then, roll them up and add them to a water glass. Put this under your bed. When you wake up, your true love is the name on the paper that was the most opened up.
Spooning – Wales
Obviously, most people will think about a different type of spooning. The Wales tradition is actually related to real spoons and it has men carving love spoons from wood and then giving it to the person they love. These spoons often have really beautiful love symbols and intricate designs. Sometimes, Celtic knot-based designs are used.
Nowadays, this is a tradition that is only half respected since young men no longer carve spoons alone. They just buy them. Even so, the tradition is still respected.
The Guessing Game – Denmark
In Denmark, love celebration is all about a game known as “Joke Letters” or Gaekkebrev in local tongue. This is a romantic tradition with people that write love notes or funny rhymes. What is really interesting is that just one hint is given to the sender’s identity, a dot for a letter in the name. When the recipient correctly guesses the sender, an egg is offered during Easter Sunday. When guessing is wrong, the receiver is the one that needs to offer an egg.
Forget About Sex – Thailand
Thailand teens actually see Valentine’s Day as one of the best possible options available when losing their virginity. However, city officials in Bangkok recommend it that couples skip this and visit a temple or go fishing. This is because of the Buddhist ritual of freeing caged birds as this is seen as improving karma.
The Language Of Flowers – Taiwan
This is similar to the tradition in Japan (more on that below), but in reverse. Men offer women gifts and then women give them back during White Day. Men follow the tradition of offering flowers, being attentive to a specific number. If one red rose is given, it means love. 11 roses mean that the person is a favorite. 99 roses mean that the love is forever. And 108 means that marriage is desired.
All The Single Ladies – South Korea
In Korea people celebrate White day, Valentine’s Day and Black Day, which is on April the fourteenth. If you did not receive anything in the other days, you need to eat some black noodles, which are called jajangmyeon. They celebrate with the other single people.
Romance Piggies – Germany
Germany is a country where Valentine’s Day is traditionally celebrated. However, besides the classic presents, a pig also became a tradition. This is because pigs symbolize luck and lust. There are even some that are depicted in highly provocative poses while being made out of chocolate.
Several Weddings – Philippines
Huge numbers of couples gather in the Philippines to get married at the same time, during Valentine’s Day. Just one wedding anniversary is shared between them. This is done in public areas and is advertised all around the country.
Obligatory Chocolate – Japan
In Japan, it is the women that give tasty chocolate to men. Even at work, we see women giving chocolates to co-workers. However, on March the fourteenth, during White Day, men return this affection. The tradition is to give a gift that has a value of around 3 times more.