A Belgian birthday equals fun, party, eating way too much birthday cake or pie, but most of all getting nice presents (read gift boxes ;)) and birthday cards. Let's take a birthday trip around the world to see what other bday traditions still exist. Hip, hip, hooray!
What stands out is that gifts are handed out on birthdays all over the world. But besides that, we spot a lot of other interesting bday traditions. So read on quickly and enjoy this birthday ride.
Besides giving presents, many countries swear by birthday cake. Although here and there they handle it slightly differently....
In Brazil the birthday person gets the first piece of cake, but not to eat it themselves. They pass it to the most important person in their life, that is, usually their mother or father.
In India it is up to the birthday person to cut a small piece of cake after the birthday song and then "feed" each guest, starting with the closest family members. Once everyone has gotten a bite, it is up to the guests to in turn feed the birthday boy. As you can already imagine, it gets nice and messy!
At New Zealand after the candles are blown out on the cake, the birthday boy or girl gets as many claps as their age.
Noodles and fairy bread
At China they do not participate in the usual cake tradition, but the birthday boy or girl is served a plate of long noodles, which is said to ensure long life. You have to slurp them down as far as you can without chewing. In China, a baby's first birthday is also celebrated right on the day of birth, and the age increases with each new lunar year. So they count the number of years you have lived and not necessarily how many full 356-day years you have experienced.
In Australia they provide a magic touch on birthday kids by making them feast on the so-called fairy bread, which consists of bread with butter and colored sprinkles, aka the famous disco dip.
Also, no cake or magic fairy bread in Ghana, where birthday children are awakened with sweet potato pâté called "oto."
In Mexico they go wild during the birthday party on a piñata filled with candy, which everyone gets to take turns hitting until the piñata breaks and a candy crush party literally breaks loose. Candy coma? Check!
Butter and flour shower
At Canada the birthday boy's of girls nose is greased with butter by family and friends to protect them from bad luck. Because then, according to them, you are too slippery to be caught by bad luck. Nice and greasy!
In Jamaica then again, they throw flour at the birthday boy or girl and that when they are not expecting it. Fun, such a flour shower, especially when you put on your best bday outfit....
In Germany single men celebrating their 30th anniversary must sweep the steps of City Hall while their friends throw pebbles in their path. This is to show that the man is single, ready to mingle and a real catch!
At Ireland birthday children are hung upside down and their heads are gently banged on the ground, once for each year they turn and then again for extra luck. No worries, no one gets hurt!
In Israel birthday children get a crown of flowers put on their heads and, sitting on a chair, are lifted as many times as their age. Children who turn three also get their first haircut.
The key to adulthood
At England on their 21st birthday, birthdays are given a key to the house as a symbol of adulthood and to show that they can come and go as they please. Ireland, Scotland and South Africa also participate in this bday tradition.
In Austria they celebrate birthdays the night before the birthday, while in Germany it is just bad luck to wish someone luck on a day other than their birthday.
And in Vietnam they just all celebrate their birthday together on the same day, namely on Tết, which is Vietnamese New Year's Day.
Would you like to celebrate your birthday somewhere else? Give us good old cake and lots of presents anyway! Want to surprise someone for their birthday? We have lots of fun and original bday boxes in store, so check it out and celebrate!