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Monday, August 16th "Do you have a Saint's Day; Treat me on your birthday?"

A tradition in Spain which may be hard for others to understand is the concept of your Saint's day, or tu santo. These days are often more celebrated than birthday's, and depending on your name you may miss out on all of the fun. Each name (in the good Catholic book of approved names) should correspond with a day of celebration, in which aside from celebrating yourself, a local virgin or figure may be taken out of the church for a little parade and ceremony. While I need to study up more on the history of these saints days, the one thing I can say is I miss out on all of the fun. There is no Jeff in Spanish, so I guess I have to celebrate on November 1st, All Saints Day.

When it comes time to your birthday things are relatively the same as other countries except you are expected to invitar, that is pay for the drinks. While from an American perspective it seems a little strange - after all you are the person of honor and deserve the attention and free stuff, right? Well, in this respect I look at it like a wedding reception. I bring the gift so I can then freeload and enjoy the meal and drinks for which the married couple is footing the bill. It also cuts down on unnecessary birthday invitations, where some folks may be trolling for presents. If you invite too many you may end up paying for more than you get!