Sunday, April 12, 2009
This is the first Easter I've spent in a non-Muslim country in two years, and since I'm surrounded by it in a way that I'm not used to anymore, I'm going to write down a few of my feelings on it. I would go so far as to say that Easter is the best moveable feast in all of Roman Catholicism, post-Vatican II. This is because Shrove Tuesday is not technically a holiday, and because Ash Wednesday is a moveable fast, not a feast. I have lots of memories of waking up to enormous baskets of Cadbury creme eggs, brightly colored Peeps, and usually a stuffed animal of a rabbit. The greatest Easter basket of all was the first one we got while on vacation. We were in Disney World, and my parents surprised my sister and I with a box of Disney chocolates and probably a little souvenir or something. It was fantastic.
What isn't fantastic about Easter was that the church was always packed and you had to get dressed up in uber-frilly clothing. When I was Catholic, I was a legit Catholic, and went to church every Sunday and didn't really mind it, but holidays sucked, because so many people only go on the holidays (I take special pride in knowing that when I stopped being Catholic, I went cold-turkey and never played that special half-religious game). Plus, this holiday is a pretty weird one to be celebrating, although I didn't think of it much at the time. Essentially, we were celebrating a zombie story. Kinda weird. I liked then (and part of me still kind of likes now) that there was a lot of pain involved in Lent, what with all the fasting and the penitence and the going without, but it's a pretty violent time in the liturgical calendar, and it ends with a dead guy coming back to life.
Luckily, while we were at church (usually we'd get there an hour early and still have to sit in the basement with one of the B-list priests), my father the heathen would be hiding plastic eggs around our yard for us to find when we got back. That was awesome. Even more awesome, at Sarah Lawrence my first year, someone hid plastic eggs around campus, and instead of candy, s/he'd put a cigarette in each one. Awesome. After the egg hunt, we ate ham.
And yet. While Easter is the most important holiday for Catholics and the best moveable feast there ever was, Christmas still kicks its ass, mainly because there are no zombies and you get real presents.
Posted by Kristin at 9:04 AM