If you are not Thai then you will probably want to acknowledge your home country’s National Day in one way or another. Chances are that there will be a restaurant featuring the cuisine and traditional activities familiar to you. Even if you have real connection to the country in question it’s worth dropping by and saying hullo.
Chances are you will be even more welcome than usual and win some points by mentioning their celebrations. In January the two most prominent National Days happen on the same date – 26th January for India and Australia. Apart from this date, both countries share a national sporting passion for one sport, cricket.
January 26th is known as India Republic Day, honouring the date on which the Constitution of India came into force on 26 January 1950 replacing the Government of India Act (1935) as the governing document of India. On this day, celebrations are held in all the state capitals, with the state governors reviewing a military parade and taking the salute of the troops.
Everywhere are street vendors with all kinds of tasty food, like crispy fried pappadums, sweet pickles, vegetables spiced with curry and peppers and thick sweet puddings. For the kids, there are trinkets, balloons and sticky sweets. It’s all wonderfully gloriously, noisy and colourful.
As soon as Christmas and New Year’s Eve are out of the way, Australians start looking towards the next holiday and an excuse to party – Australia Day. The nation becomes even more patriotic than usual and celebrates in a big way, with events held in just about every community to commemorate the arrival of the first fleet on Australian soil in 1788. Here’s what the locals are likely to get up to: Enjoy a BBQ The perfect and traditional way to celebrate Australia day is with a barbeque. They Invite family, friends and neighbours around for a sausage sizzle. It doesn’t get much better than a relaxed BBQ in the backyard to celebrate an often very hot Australia Day.
Cool down at the beach As a country largely populated around the coastline many are within easy driving distance of a beach. Then it’s likely to be beach cricket for a truly Aussie day. Aussie food – Apart from ‘another shrimp on the barbie’, traditional Australian foods may be vegemite sandwiches, meat pies and sausage rolls to lamingtons and pavlova. We should also mention Cuba’s National Day on which is Republic of Cuba Day of Liberation on January 1st.