One custom that we have in Greece and maybe sounds a bit unusual to you is tsiknopempti which is a day once per year, it always falls on a Thursday and we roast meat and eat until we are stuffed. The reason of this custom is because the next day and the previous day, are fasting days and we prepare for the big 40 day fasting before Easter.
This day is very unusual because although it isn’t a special celebration, if you walk on the road you are going to see that people have taken out their grills and roast meat which is the main course among other dishes like salads, potatoes etc. The tradition changes a bit from place to place over Greece. For example in Serres they make a big fire and roast all the meats together and even jump over the fire. In Crete older and younger people run on the road, singing and dancing.
My family and I often go or get invited to an other family’s house, roast together, listen to music, eat, laugh, and talk. The children sometimes play until the food is ready, the adults drink some wine, or another alcoholic drink and talk. Men make the meat and the women make the salads, potatoes and various dips. The atmosphere is very friendly and happy, the house smells wonderfully from the meats.
I love this celebration because we have a lot of fun, meet with other people, and eat together. I take part in this celebration every year and I suggest you to do so as well if you ever come to Greece this day. You are going to love it.