Much Ado about Holiday Festivities: What It Truly Means for Some People
Public holidays are days that we generally are supposed to look forward to as a time to relax and unwind from the stress of work and/or business, simply put, our daily lives BUT do we really get to use the public holiday as a day to relax like we’re supposed to? This Easter, we chatted with a few people about what holidays meant to them growing up and how they spend their holidays now that they’re older. Makes for a pretty interesting read.
Mary-ann, 32, Surulere, Lagos, lives with family
Not really, just that we have a full house as all my siblings will be around. In my home, the kitchen is my space. So while the boys are busy cleaning, helping with some slicing if there are vegetables and blasting music in the sitting room at very high volume all day, with their friends going in and out. I typically am in the kitchen for the better part of the day as the meals on festive periods are usually quite elaborate.
The closest thing to a ritual is my dad having wine with myself and the boys while we talk about anything of interest
I really really wish I could be free to just rest, eat, and relax instead of slaving away all day. That is all I wish for really.
Ells, 20-30, Lagos, lives with family
No traditions for celebrating Easter except for extended family that may come around for lunch on Easter Sunday. I help out with cleaning and cooking while extended family stops over for lunch and we also use the opportunity to catch up. There are no traditions except for extended family stopping by. I really wish I could be on vacation in the Maldives or Bora Bora.
Moyinoluwa, 25, Lagos, lives with family
Yes, we have a tradition in my house for Easter where we go to church on Thursday (Maundy Thursday), then we spend good Friday at home. It’s food for me to be honest. One thing I always look forward to is the frejon with garri and fried fish sauce. Spending Easter in my house though, is filled with cooking and house chores. On Saturday (Holy Saturday), it’s pretty chill where everyone does their own thing and on Easter Sunday, we go to church and go back home to more food. Other than that, there’s pretty much no tradition in the house.
One wish? I’d want to be out with friends exploring different restaurants and just having the time of our lives.
Gbemisola, 32, Lagos, lives with partner and two toddler boys.
We’re a “new” family so we don’t yet have any traditions in our home. For Christmas, we send the boys to their grandma in Ibadan. However, for Easter and other holidays, we’ll typically stay indoors and eat and find ways to entertain ourselves. I mostly cook, although last Christmas, I ordered food from a caterer so I only had to bake. I’m all for outsourcing, but I’m also realizing that I seem to enjoy all the “kurukere” that comes with cooking and catering to my family. Maybe it’s social conditioning or being on a budget most of the time. But I’m looking forward to the time when I have people who are competent enough to let me truly relax while they do the work.
What I’d love for an ideal holiday is a staycation. Maybe without the kids but if the kids are coming I’d love a nanny too. Of course catered food or a cook.
Fayo, late 20s, Ikorodu, lives with partner, daughter, and mother.
Festive seasons are usually spent quietly save for Christmas and New Year which my family used to throw parties for when my grandparents were alive. It was a tradition for family and friends to convene at my grandparents’ a day before or that day for celebrations where everyone would have assigned tasks to themselves; my mom and grandma would be found in the midst of caterers, while my dad would be found guarding the drinks and seated proudly in a corner close to a stereo as the DJ, the kids which would include me then would be near the butchers watching the rams get slaughtered and do their dance as life bade them farewell.
This is my first Easter as a mom and I can honestly say that I spent most of it as a source of entertainment for my little one as there was no electricity to let cartoons take on that task but no harm done as I got to spend it with the ones that have my heart.
One wish for future public holidays is to have a good mental health space to make it a celebratory one.