Happy Chilean Census Day! My Thoughts on Quirky, International Holidays

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I don’t know about you but I enjoy learning about holidays in foreign countries. Especially if they seem quirky, strange, funny, or even just so different from what we have here in the states.

My cousin married a Chilean woman and for years he has lived in Chile. Today I got an email from him and it said, “Today is Census day. Everyone has to stay home and wait for them to come. A forced holiday. If not – you get a big fine.”

It gave me a good laugh. I can’t comprehend how this would work, but sure wish I was there to observe how it happens, and what the census people ask. And then what happens as the day goes on, that would be interesting too. Surely no one wants to be the last house to be visited.

Chile Flag

His email got me thinking of other holidays in other countries that seemed unusual, but frankly, the Chilean Census Day seemed the strangest to me.

Have you experienced unusual holidays in your travels? Do you know of any that seem as strange as Census Day? Let me know! I didn’t tell my cousin I was writing this post today, but I’m sure he’ll feel better if we share some other odd ones with him. And I can only hope he’s still not sitting around waiting for the census takers to come by!

P.S. Here is what my cousin said:

Yes, they can leave their house after being counted. Even President Bachelet walked around as a Census taker. It was a nice quiet vacation day. Everything was closed. Like on Thanksgiving. Having everyone stay home is the only logical way to count them. It’s a relatively small country. Now they have everyone’s name and background and education etc.  This is put on the door after the house has been “censado”(census taken). Then you’re “free”.

Chilean Census Sticket

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