Christmas Day in Manila!
The Philippines has earned the distinction of celebrating the world's longest Christmas season with Christmas carols heard as early as September and lasting until the Feast of the Epiphany, the Feast of the Black Nazarene on January 9; which happens to be Sweetie’s birthday, and the Feast of the Santo Nino de Cebu on the third Sunday of January.
The official observance is from December 16 with the start of the "Simbang Gabi" or Midnight Mass until the Feast of the Epiphany.
Christmas Day is primarily a family affair and the most joyous occasion in my tradition. And what could be a better way to celebrate Christmas? It’s celebrating it at home with my whole family.
By tradition, Filipinos typically visit members of the extended family, to pay respects to their elders. This custom of giving respect has been an age-old tradition in the Philippines called "Pagmamáno", which is done by drawing the elder's hand to one's forehead, while saying the phrase Máno Pô. The elder then blesses the person who has given their respect, and in turn gives "Aguinaldo" – presents or money; usually crisp, fresh-from-the-bank bills given mostly to younger children. Godparents are especially socially obligated to give presents or "Aguinaldo" to their godchildren.
It’s nice to be home for Christmas.
Cheers and Merry Christmas to all.