It may be just a rumour but it is popular folklore, Christmas in Germany has a strange tradition of using pickles. When German households furnish their Christmas trees, history quotes they use a glass bauble that looks like a pickle and hang it as the last item on the Christmas tree! This is then put on the tree well out of sight of the little ones who first thing in the morning rush down who attempted to discover where it's been hidden on the Christmas tree by the adults. Whether this Christmas custom ever took place remains cloudy in mystery despite there being hundreds of tales being spoken of it! It still remains one of the most unusual customs we've learned about even if it's not true
However, it's time to crown Spain, Italy and Portugal with the 'Most Bizarre Christmas Tradition' award. Do you know that the Italians, the Portuguese and the Spanish have an additional figure in the Nativity Play that we know and appreciate so much? Let me welcome you to the Caganer. Joining the shepherds along with Joseph, Mary and the little Jesus, is the Caganer a tiny statue of a man, which you can find placed in the corner of the nativity play inconspicuously. Why is this figure inconspicuously placed that no person can look at him although he is so significant? Coming initially from Catalonia, the Caganer statue represents a man in the process of (how can I say this without sounding rude) taking a poo.
Although this is an extremely unusual custom there are no records of it going back further than the seventeenth century. It is still unknown as to why a figure of a man taking a poo has any meaning to Christmas. However, maybe God is seeking to use the Caganer as a means to show himself and call to us every time he deems it is necessary and show that whatever gender or race we are, in the end we are all the same. It has of course developed into a fun game for the children!
When Christmas starts it's well known that we should keep the young children busy and we search for ways to entertain them. Even though we may sometimes feel the custom is a little strange, it seems the legend is a little closer to home than we first believed! Behold the pooping Santa! Would you believe me if I stated this is the Caganer brought up to today's perception of the past! Candy literally tumbles out of Santa's behind if you squeeze it carefully. Santa is wearing his traditional red-colored clothing and to get things going 15 grams of candy are provided. All you need to do is fill him up with sweets and tap him on the back to get your reward! Should Santa suffer from a bout of constipation a little shake tend to get everything out!
Should you be searching for a more traditional Christmas item could we offer the humble Christmas cracker? They have been a tradition in the Uk for over two hundred years and a Christmas turkey dinner will not be complete without having Christmas crackers. These days they've grown to be more sophisticated and gone are the days of cheap crackers to be superceded by higher end luxury Christmas crackers.