December 31, 2011

Bologna in December

Bologna is full of holiday lights during December. Festivities here begin on December 8th, the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary. It continues with Santa Lucia on the 13th. Traditionally this saint, "santa" in Italian would bring gifts to children on the night between the 12th and 13th... Christmas eve is widely celebrated and includes a no meat meal, generally includes seafood.

Of course there's Christmas day and the day after, the 26th is Santo Stefano. Then there's the 31st of December, the last day of the year which is generally celebrated with a very impressive meal that includes many dishes per course, ending naturally with champagne, spumante or the local bubbly!

Last but not least, there's the old witch, la Befana, who brings candy to good children and coal to those who've been bad on the 6th of January.  Usually some kids get candy coal, but no one really gets real coal!

Then its all back to normal, the school vacation is over, back to work and everyone else can finally get on a diet!

Happy Holidays to all and Happy New Year!