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Dia de los Reyes in Spain

January 8, 2010

January 6th was Epiphany Day. In Spain it is called Dia de los Reyes.

It is the day when a group of Kings traveled to Bethlehem to bring three gifts to the baby Jesus after following a star in the heavens.

I’m not religious or anything, but after living in Valencia, I woke up reminiscing my days in the old continent, savoring Spanish traditions and at times frustrated with the cultural differences I had acquired in the US.

It’s another holiday in the calendar, and if it happens to be on a Friday or Monday – even better, great for a “puente”, as they say it Spain – a long weekend.

It’s a magical day, like Christmas all over again. Families get together, the table is full of food and everyone is anxious about the “regalos”.

Each city has a parade, the “cabalgata” with the 3 Kings, riding camels, representing their journey to meet the baby Jesus. During this day, we can all feel like kids, excitingly waiting for gifts. Each child chooses a King, their favorite, who will deliver the presents.

It’s definitely not a formal night like Christmas Eve (many Spanish families go all out and wear their best outfits on the 24th), but it sure is tasty, with a great variety of sweets, including the “Roscón de Reyes”, a typical cake made for this special day, always served with homemade hot chocolate.

Here in Brazil it’s neither a holiday nor a gift giving day. It is the day we remove our Christmas decoration. It’s like a wake up call saying “party is over”. How ironic… In Spain Christmas is renovated and in Brazil it reaches an end. Party is over, back to reality; in Spanish: “aguafiestas”.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. January 9, 2010 8:42 pm

    How cool. Always a reason to celebrate in Spain, it seems.

  2. January 12, 2010 3:56 pm

    Buena explicación de este dia tan importante, Adriana! ;-)

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