Finland is an intriguing and curious country that is home to over 1000 lakes. It is also the home of electronic giant Nokia and is also referred to as the home country of Santa Claus. The country is also known for going through an extreme recession and its saunas. Although most people are familiar with Finland, they are not as familiar with the cultural customs that are a part of this northern land.
The following customs are some of the most interesting traditions that are practiced in the world. Some of these customs you may have heard of, and some may not know about.
Grill Queue – Grillijono
This is not the barbecue grill that many Americans are familiar with. Instead, this is a fast food restaurant that is placed in various areas of villages, towns and cities in Finland.
There is only one rule when you visit one of these restaurants, and this rule is that you must never skip the queue or the line. Most of the patrons abide by this rule, but it is common for intoxicated patrons to try and start fights with others waiting in line. Always respect the rules of the queue, and wait until your turn arrives to order from the grill.
It should not come as a surprise that a country that has so many hardcore fans of heavy metal and rock will host annual World Air Guitar competitions and championships. These championships and competitions take place in Oulu, a city located in Northern Finland.
The very first competition was held as a way to make fun of air guitar. However, it quickly became popular and the festival has transformed into an annual tradition. In fact, the festival/championship has become so popular, event planners have networked with 20 other countries.
Are you wondering what air guitar is? It is playing a guitar that does not exist. Then, imagine playing this guitar while lip-syncing and dancing. You continue with your performance and get the crowd ready to enjoy your air guitar solo. This helps you win the hearts of the crowd and the votes of the judges.
Saunas are fixtures in Finnish culture, and your visit will not be complete without experience a true sauna experience. A purifying act occurs during the process, and vihta or vasta is used during the process.
Vashta and vihta are two words that have the same meaning. It is a bundle of twigs that made of birch, and tied together using natural materials. This bundle is used hit yourself after your sauna.
This is a tradition that commonly occurs during celebrations during the middle of summer, and is said to help improve blood flow and circulation.
Sausage And Potatoes
You may be familiar with eating sausage with potatoes or hash browns, but chances are, you have never had sausage and potatoes in the manner that is a part of Finnish culture. The dish is simple and delicious, but it is also greasy.
This traditional dish is often consumed later at night after enjoying a night out on the town. When you are placing your order for sausage and potatoes, be sure to add everything. Ketchup, mustard and pickled cucumbers with onions are some of the ways you can enhance the flavor of your dish.
These are only four of the many interesting traditions in Finnish culture. The reserved and quiet citizens of Finland have adapted to their environment, and have preserved their language and simple way of life.