Sunday, May 12, 2013

Sham el Nessim

Sham el Nessim is an Egyptian national holiday celebrating the beginning of spring and Easter Monday. Today with the Islamisation of the country it is more of a national holiday than a religious holiday. It always falls on Orthodox Easter Monday. Although it's based on a Christian calendar date, it is celebrated by both Christians and Muslims in Egypt. It is a tradition dating back to ancient Egyptian feasts.

The name of the holiday comes from the Egyptian name of the Harvest Season, which means a day of creation, the smell of a breeze. According to Wikipedia, the Ancient Egyptians used to offer salted fish, lettuce, and onions to their deities on this day.

Even today this tradition continues but in a different way. Egyptians will eat salted fish, called fessikh with onions and shallots. At the front of each entry to the home some will slice part on an onion and leave it there. My mum does it until this day. 

Feseekh with tahini, spring onions, lemon and lebanese bread

To celebrate the day, many spend the day having a picnic. This salted fish I speak of, namely feseekh is by far the most common tradition. It is considered a delicacy. It's a grey mullet that is dried, fermented and salted. It is marinated with salt, pepper, olive oil and other ingredients and usually stored in glass jars. It is has a very strong pungent smell. The fish is eaten with fresh lemon, shallots and tahini. People either love or hate it. I love it. Definitely a time of year I look forward to. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Ibiza Photo Diary - the Beach, the Sun, the Parties.

Ibiza, the place to be, the party island. We travelled from Barcelona to Ibiza via a cruise boat. During the European summer they depart quite regularly. It's a comfortable and affordable ride. It was the only Spanish island we explored but definitely want to head back to explore some more islands in Spain. What I loved about the Spaniards is their laid back attitude. 

We were only there for a couple of nights. We went to F*** Me I'm Famous at Pascha where David Guetta played. Now I'm no fan or anything, it was just the big night to go to while we were there. As the old hag that I am, if we stayed longer I'm not sure I could have withstood couple of nights partying in a row. Definitely a place I would have loved to have gone to when I was pre-old hag. Nonetheless, I had an awesome time.  Awesome atmosphere. Europeans know how to enjoy themselves. Whether it be partying by night or sun baking topless by the beach. Oh to be back there this summer. Highlights would have to be the nightlife and watching the sunset at Sant Antoni beach. 

We were running late to make it in time for the sunset but thankfully made it. Thank you cab driver. 
The Pascha girls. They were everywhere promoting some party or rather. Yes, Spanish girls are so beautiful.
Yep, definitely had to take a photo with this lady. Not posting it. Yes, it did include hands on boobs and yes I was asked not to. 
Free candy at Pascha. It was some good candy.
Partying the night away means missing out on the hotel breakfast. Thankfully found a great spot to eat near the hotel. Omelette with Bocconcini salad. 
How could you reist Sangria in Spain?
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