Today is a day of celebration in England: Bonfire Night! Last year was my first time and it was great. Bonfire Night or Guy Fawkes Day is celebrated every November 5th. On November 5th, 1605, Guy Fawkes, a member of the Gunpowder plot, was arrested while guarding explosives the plotters had placed below the House of Lords. Celebrating the failed attempt on King James I life, the people lit bonfires around London. It is a thanksgiving of a failed terrorist attack. Guildford has a whole list of events in the Guildford Firework Fiesta event including: a Mayoral address, torchlight procession toward Stoke Park, beacon lighting, and FIREWORKS! I went to the park last year and it reminded me of 4th of July. There are carnival rides, food, and prizes to be won. Entrance is free as well J The Universities Student Union is gathering students and meeting at Hari’s Bar, on campus, for a few drinks before heading to the town center as a group. There are always ways to get involved on campus and meet new people!
Other special days include Pancake Day and Boxing Day. Pancake Day, or Shrove Tuesday, is in February or March, preceding Ash Wednesday. As the name may suggest, the day is celebrated by eating pancakes! It is celebration that ties in with lent, but you don’t need to be religious to celebrate. It has become a Christmas type celebration where many people celebrate it without caring too much about the history. Last year I had my dad bring over Snoqualmie Pancake mix, a mix that can only be found in my area. There is a difference between English pancakes and American pancakes. English pancakes are essentially crepes and American ones are fluffy. My English friends were excited to try American pancakes.
Boxing Day you may be more familiar with. It is celebrated the day after Christmas. It was traditionally celebrated when servants and tradesmen would receive a “Christmas box” ie. gifts from their employers. It is a bank holiday, meaning it is an extra required day off! In my house we celebrated by just eating the leftover food from Christmas dinner and making another chicken. This may sound a bit lame, but I was very picky (and still am), so getting to choose what I wanted to eat was very special! Other people use it as an opportunity to do charity work or give to the homeless. There are often sales on Boxing Day, as it has become similar to Black Friday. The great thing about the fact it is a holiday is if you have to work, you get pay and a half. My mom was always very happy to work on Boxing Day!
I have to go now and get ready for Bonfire Night,