January 2: Berchtoldstag

In some areas of Switzerland and Liechtenstein, Berchtold Day, or locally Berchtoldstag, is celebrated on this day, January 2. The name of the Alemannic tradition does not refer to a Saint (there is no St. Berchtold) but is derived from the verb berchten, meaning “to walk around, asking for food”, which we find throughout Europe in the period from the day of the Dead to the Epiphany, even if there are various theories concerning the holiday’s name. Blessed Berchtold of Engelberg Abbey, for istance, died circa 2 November 1197, and…

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Chocolate rain falls in Switzerland

Residents of an industrial area of Olten, a town in north-western Switzerland, just few days ago, have been reporting chocolate powder raining from the sky. Well, if chocolate was ever going to fall from the sky anywhere in the world, it had to be just in Switzerland, the European country well-known for making probably the best chocolate in the world! Reports of chocolate powder falling from the sky in the town of Olten started showing up online a few days ago, accompanied by photos of cars covered in brown. People…

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