Custom of Saya
The custom is revived on the eve of the Lights by the Association of Cappadocians and Asia Minor "O Megas Basilios" and the Association of Women Ascetics. At noon on January 5, the residents gather wood and place it in the shape of a cone in front of the village church. After vespers, the church committee organizes a financial bidding competition in favor of the church. Whoever offers the most money gets the privilege of lighting the fire in the village square. In the evening there is a big feast with traditional dances and delicacies from Cappadocia.
Klidonas or Kaloyiannia
On June 24th, the feast of St. John of Klidonas, the custom of Klidonas is celebrated in the traditional settlement of the Sarakatsans in Porto Lagos, on the border of the prefecture of Rodopi with the prefecture of Xanthi. There is a divination ritual that concerns unmarried girls. The girls gather flowers, tie a ring to them and put them in a copper vessel. Singing the hymn of Saint John, they fill the vessel with water at the village tap. Returning to the huts, they take out of the water the first flower corresponding to the girl who will marry first of all. A feast of songs, dances and treats ensues in the world.
This is a rural custom of Eastern Thrace, held at the end of October, and refers to sowing and a good harvest. With the start of the new sowing, the Jamalaris, rural farmers, revive the action based on the struggle of the old with the new, the new with the old. The subject concerns the claim of Gadina, a beautiful girl, who represents life. The young man kills the older man and as the winner marries the girl. The dramatic elements are presented in a comical way and athyrostomies.
Custom of stealing
In the region of Malgara, in the villages of Pamforo, Aigiro and Roditi, the custom of stealing is celebrated on February 26, the eve of Saint Theodore. The young men of the village, after 12 at night, go to the houses of the unmarried girls and "steal" carts, tools... which the parents of the girls hide in their yards. The boys grab or overturn (fun) the carts thus implying that it is time for the girl's "cap". The theft of the cart alludes to the theft of the young lady's virginity. Finally, they leave the stolen goods in the village square where the girls' parents find them the next day.
Editor: Niki Kalopaidis