It's time to 'smell the breezes'
Today is Sham el-Nessim. Literally, it means "smell the breezes," and it's a national holiday in Egypt. The Egyptians celebrate it by eating picnics and visiting zoos, parks, and other green spaces.Posted — Updated
If you've ever taken a day off work just to get outside and enjoy nice weather, do I have a holiday for you! Well, the Egyptians do, anyway.
In other words, it's a national holiday made for going outside. "Smell the Breezes Day." How about that?
While the holiday doesn't have have a particular religious meaning — it predates Christianity by thousands of years and has agricultural roots — it has come to be marked on the day following Eastern Orthodox Christian and Coptic Christian Easter. Despite its nonreligious roots, I like to think of it as a fantastic follow-up to Easter (and the long stretch of Lent and Holy Week before it).
The date for Eastern Christian Easter varies like it does for Catholics and Protestants, and the dates often do not coincide with Western Easter. However, this year, since Eastern and Western Christians celebrated Easter on the same year, we get to mark "Smell the Breezes Day" together, too.