Holidays in Namibia

Instead of snow and cold weather in Namibia for Christmas, they have rain and average temperatures of 86-95°F.  Although Namibians celebrate Christmas at the same time as the United States, December falls during the summer/wet season where temperatures are extremely hot and rain is frequent.  In fact, similar to how Americans wish for a “White Christmas,” Namibians wish for a rainy Christmas, and when it does, it’s considered a blessing and a joyous event because it provides a slight relief from the heat.  However, the traditions of church, food, family and friends remain the same.  To prepare for the special day Namibians often pick out a tree and decorate it to represent the joyful spirit of the holiday.  Namibians generally use thorn branches and decorate the house with bright strings, beads, and lights that children will admire during their ride around town on December 6th when all the lights are switched on.  The celebration begins by attending a church service on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day to be followed by time spent with family and friends.  The meal is generally a traditional favorite consisting of turkey, gammon (ham that has been smoked like bacon), roast pork or lamb, paired with a salad and sometimes vegetables.  For dessert, they generally indulge in ice-cream, sweets, or German cookies, since there is a large presence of Germans in the larger towns.