Easter was spent in lovely Liberec with Iva and Michal and their new 5 month old baby girl, Annie (Anicka in Czech). She is one happy baby! My very favorite Czech family.
The Czech Easter traditions have some similarities like the States, but also a few differences.. They have Easter Monday instead of Good Friday as the holiday, but this year, they (we) had both days off for the first time! I moved here just in time. Many families get together for this holiday and dye eggs, have egg huts, make traditional foods, and eat a lot of chocolate:) However, what is different here is that men are allowed to beat, yes beat, their wives or girlfriends with a special kind of whip (see here along with other Easter traditions) called a pomlazka to bring her good health for seven years. Can you imagine this in the USA?! No way. That is because most would go the extreme. So here, it’s more for fun (and not hurtful)! Leap year reverses the tradition and women beat the men, but from what I saw, the women still got the beating. This tradition holds true mainly in smaller villages and towns today in the Czech Republic and other Eastern European countries. Church services are also very common on this day with sermons spoken mainly in Czech, English, and German. Easter markets galore in Old Town Square and New Town Square with stalls full of traditional treats, drinks, and gifts – I love it all!
We did not participate in the whipping (thankfully) but we did enjoy the sunshine, beautiful Czech countryside and scenery, great company, food, wine, and rest. A very needed four day weekend. Veselé Velikonoce (Happy Easter in Czech)!