Five Charmingly British Activities for Overseas Students at Easter
Delicate crocuses and daffodils begin to appear from the once frozen earth and baby animals are welcomed into the world in farms across the country. The UK countryside breathes a sigh of relief after the long winter. Spring is here.
As things start warming up there’s so much more to see and do in the UK. If you’re an overseas student, here are recommendations for five charmingly British activities to make the most of your Easter break.
Egg blowing and decorating
Eggs are one of the best loved symbols of the new season and people have been decorating them for thousands of years for a variety of different religious and cultural reasons.
You can decorate eggs without removing the yolk and the white first, but it could be considered wasteful (omelette anyone?) and egg blowing is part of the fun! Before salmonella was seen as a risk, you simply made a hole on either end of the egg with a cocktail stick and put your mouth on one end to blow the contents out into a bowl. However, there are other options to avoid ingesting raw egg, as Wikihow explains (http://www.wikihow.com/Blow-Out-Eggs).
Once the shells are empty you can decorate them in many ways. Paint on funny faces, dip in food dye, or wrap in ribbons. Display your masterpieces however you like or use them in an Easter egg hunt (see below).
Organise an Easter egg hunt
Easter egg hunts can be as big and elaborate or as small and simple as you want.
Traditionally people would be hide real, hand-painted eggs for friends and family to find. Nowadays, people buy chocolate eggs and other sweet treats instead.
In Britain, chocolate has almost become synonymous with Easter and Easter eggs appear to get larger and appear in the shops earlier each year. If you’re choosing the chocolate eggs we recommend buying little ones. They’re easier to conceal and you can eat more of them!
The key to a great Easter egg hunt is to find an interesting outdoor area; preferably a garden with lots of bushes, benches and plant pots to hide the eggs behind. Arm your friends with small baskets in which to gather the discovered eggs and enjoy!
If you like your Easter egg hunts a little more challenging, add in some clues to really test your treasure hunters. You can theme your egg hunt around the course you are studying for extra learning value.
Seek out spring flowers
If you have any green space near where you study, by now you should be seeing snowdrops, daffodils and crocuses peeking out to welcome spring.
Did you know that the daffodil is the national flower of Wales? However, it was actually the Romans that brought this flower over to our isles in about 300BC. They thought that daffodil sap had healing properties but in reality the sap contains crystals that can irritate the skin
If you’re keen to see this season’s flora and fauna in their natural habitat, why not go for a stroll in one of Britain’s ancient forests? (http://www.forestry.gov.uk/visit)
Go and see ‘lambing’
Just as Easter means rebirth to so many people, ‘lambing’ is the birth of spring lambs across the country. Sheep can deliver their young from late winter until well into spring. If you’re lucky enough to visit a farm at the right time, it’s an amazing experience to see the arrival of the lambs. Of course you can never guarantee that any lambs will be born while you’re visiting so the National Trust have put together a list where you can see lambs enjoying their first spring, no matter where you’re staying in the UK.
Take part in an Easter bonnet parade
Creating and wearing hats at Easter is a tradition dating back to when people would refresh their wardrobe and wear their new clothes at Easter.
Women especially would treat themselves to the luxury of new hat to wear to church after the period of Lent (a Christian tradition).
The modern-day equivalent usually takes place in schools across the country where children are asked to decorate a plain straw boater in the most imaginative ways possible. The wackier the better! Here are some cracking examples from last year. (http://metro.co.uk/2016/03/22/21-beautiful-easter-bonnets-that-definitely-won-the-parade-5768677/)