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Lesson Transcript

Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Kenya Series at SwahiliPod101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind Kenyan holidays and observances. I’m Eric, and you're listening to Season 1, Lesson 2. Christmas. In Swahili, it’s called Krismasi.
Christmas is celebrated on December 25 every year. Christians all over the world gather in churches on Christmas Eve, which is December 24, and wait together until twelve midnight, which is the time when it is believed Jesus Christ was born.
This lesson will highlight the ways in which Christians in Kenya celebrate Christmas.
Now, before we get into more detail, do you know the answer to this question-
Many Kenyans choose to travel on Christmas; do you know where they go?
If you don't already know, you’ll find out a bit later. Keep listening.
Christmas celebrations typically begin on December 24th. Many workers are given holidays starting on the 23rd to allow them to prepare for the 25th, which is the most important day. During the day on the 24th, people go shopping, or kununua bidhaa, and buy all the food products they will need from supermarkets and other places. Flour, rice, drinks, and various goods are bought in abundance ahead of time, because not many shops are open on Christmas Day.
As I mentioned previously, on Christmas Eve many Christian believers, in Swahili muumini, stay awake until twelve midnight because they believe that is the time Jesus Christ was born. If the weather is fine and the sky is clear, most people will wait outside, lighting fires and singing songs to praise Jesus. Some go to church and join with the children in singing and acting in plays about the birth of Jesus.
When Christmas comes on December 25, people celebrate in different ways.
Some people go to church in the morning and when they come back, they celebrate by feasting and drinking special drinks. Many Kenyans like roasted goat meat. After feasting and
drinking, some people visit national parks, or mbuga la wanyama, to see the wild animals, or go to swimming pools and amusement parks to amuse their children.
On this celebrated day, people also go to great lengths to please their relatives, often spending money on luxurious goods, or bidhaa starehe. Many people don't hold back, instead simply praying they will be able to afford basic needs, or bidhaa msingi and sustain themselves also after Christmas!
Now it's time to answer our quiz question-
Many Kenyans choose to travel on Christmas; do you know where they go?
Most people travel from the cities they live in to the countryside where their roots are. Others opt to visit the cities of Mombasa and Naivasha and spend the vacation at a hotel or eat in special restaurants.
So, listeners, how was this lesson? Did you learn something interesting?
Does Christmas Day give people in your country a sense of excitement like it does for the Kenyans?
Leave us a comment at SwahiliPod101.com, and we'll see you in the next lesson!

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Do you celebrate Christmas in your country?