Friday, 2 November 2007

Wszystkich Świętych

Yesterday was a national holiday for all Saints' Day. Traditionally on this day Polish people visit the family graves and light lamps there. Not only family, as I discovered in the cemetery yesterday evening, but also on the graves of the illustrious departed as well as on war memorials. If a grave looks neglected, it's customary to light a candle there as well, just to make sure no-one gets forgotten (this means that occasionally empty plots and flowerbeds end up adorned with votive lights, just in case there happened to be someone lying there, to make Absolutely Certain that everyone is remembered).


It's not at all creepy, like Halloween, but peaceful and beautiful.

I'm not great at night-time photos, but here are my best efforts:









4 comments:

the sister said...

Aww that's really sweet, I wish we did that over here rather than the trick or treat rubbish that's been imported from America!

pinolona said...

I LIKE the trick or treat rubbish. Candy please...

pinolona said...

N.B. Halloween is NOT American: it's Celtic, and the sister would be perfectly well aware of this if she paid any attention to her Welsh cultural heritage...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween

http://weirdwales.co.uk/myths-and-customs/facts-and-info/01-halloween-traditions.shtml

island1 said...

Enjoyed reading this very much and chuckled heartily on several occasions. Also gave me lots of warm glowy feelings of nostalgia as you described many of the same cultural oddities that struck me when I first came here.

Nice to find another English-language blog about Poland, keep it up.