Holidays & Occasions
The Promise are a close knit community, celebrating nearly everything together, and combining holidays to help make that possible.
1st: New Year's -- Recognition of the new year varies between countries and the Promise as a culture don't put enough value in time to formally recognize a new year, so the first of January tends to be recognized more as the end to the winter holiday than the beginning of the new year. Parties are held, concerts given, and magic preformed. In warmer places, in lieu of fireworks, ice and water magic practiioners create snow.
Spring Equinox -- The changing of seasons is really the only part of time that the Promise actively acknowledge. During the spring equinox, almost everyone wears flower crowns and those with long enough hair (whether they're human or beast) often have hair decorated with flowers. Activities to celebrate include planting, decorating the inside of buildings with flowers and other plantlife, a scavenger hunt for eggs that are then decorated, and always a community-wide feast that includes everyone in a sanctuary. The spring equinox is considered a time for new beginnings, and when many people dispose of what is no longer needed, begin new skills or jobs, or take new risks.
Summer Solstice -- Bonfires are the most common way to celebrate the summer solstice. Often built while it's still day, the bonfire burns through the night and into the sunrise of the new day. During the night, music is played from drums and guitars while people dance around the bonfire, smaller fires are often built to cook mountain pies, smores and meats.
Autumn Equinox -- The ending of the summer's hot sun and the beginning of the leaves changing colors is celebrated by the Promise by a large feast, picking apples, trail rides or hikes, hay rides, hunting for meat for the feast (and in some places for meat to be stored over the winter).
Halloween -- On October 31st, all barriers between worlds are thinned -- between the world of the dead and that of the living, between Asylum and the Outsiders, all magical portals and cloaks become unstable and weak. As a result, in many locations Halloween is the most dangerous day of the year for the Promises. But for those who are safe, it's a day of celebration with bonfires, music, costumes, masks, harmless pranks, and the giving out of various treats. For some, Halloween is also the one day that they can preform a ceremony that enables a lost Partner or soulmate's soul to stay in the living world again even after strength has returned to the veils and barriers, allowing the soul to become its own body so that the person can continue to live.
Staedlij -- The last two weeks of Winter hold so many holidays from other cultures and religions that the Staedlij festival is a continuous celebration that begins on the winter solstice and ends on January 1st. Activities include bonfires, snowball fights, sleigh rides, tree decorating, ice skating, gift exchanges, and parties.