Spring has officially begun in the Southern Hemisphere and while the weather might not be reflecting the change in season just yet, we’re not complaining, because along with all the other Cape Town meat wholesalers out there, we know our dams need the rain to stave off another terribly dry summer. The start of spring means different things for different countries – in South Africa it’s traditionally a time to wander up the west coast to see all the beautiful flowers, and it’s also a time to start gearing up towards more braais as the weather warms. But in the Northern Hemisphere for whom spring is in March, they have their own rather unique way of celebrating the season of birth and blossoms.
Baba Marta in Bulgarian means ‘Grandmother March Day’ and in folklore she’s a grumpy old lady who dictates the weather – if you treat her badly, she’ll bestow more miserable winter days. The holiday is celebrated on March 1st and the tradition is to exchange Martenitsas – a small piece of adornment combining red and white coloured threads usually worn as a wristband until either a stork or tree blossoms are seen, officially symbolising the start of warmer weather.
Harking back to a tradition from the 16th century, the Polish celebrate spring with the drowning of the Marzanna – a big straw doll. The doll, which signifies a cold and miserable winter, is paraded through the streets and then down to the water where it is ceremoniously dunked to symbolise the end of winter. A favourite spring dish is pork and Easter egg soup – that’s hard-boiled eggs, not chocolate eggs thankfully. Quite simple to make it requires good quality bacon, ham and sausage – all available from N1 of course, who always offer the best wholesale meat Western Cape.
Also harking back to the 16th century, the Swiss have a similar tradition, but theirs involves a snowman – which can also be filled with explosives! Böögg, the snowman, is burned at the stake and how long he takes to burn is an indication of the coming summer’s weather – if the explosives go off in the first ten minutes it will be a dry summer and if after only 15 minutes it will be a rainy summer.
Holi also known as ‘the festival of colours’ or ‘the festival of love’ is a Hindu spring festival celebrated mainly in India, although it is making its way into other Western Countries as well. The gathering symbolises the triumph of good over evil, and the arrival of spring over winter. One of the most memorable moments of the festival is the tradition of spraying others with water and also throwing coloured powders over people – hence the name, the festival of colours.
Of course, here the weather will start warming up soon, and that means stocking up on all our favourite braai foods – Heritage Day, also known as National Braai Day, is just around the corner after all. So, for the highest quality products turn to N1, leading Johannesburg and Cape Town meat wholesalers. And Happy Spring!
Source: Accuweather – 10 Spring Traditions