Merry Christmas! How are you celebrating? We recently had the privilege to host a party at our house for a Tanzanian friend. Here are five things that seem to be true pretty much across the board for parties, irrespective of the occasion:
First, if there is a cake, it comes near the beginning of the party, as an opening to the festivities. It is cut early on so that it can be served with the rest of the food.
Second, there are no courses. Food is buffet style and you take both sweet and savory together.
Third, there is an MC. Tanzanian parties are about the formality, not the mingling, so you need someone to help the proceedings along.
Fourth, there must be speeches. Merely being in attendance is a good enough reason to be called upon for a speech. Sometimes just introducing yourself and thanking the appropriate people is enough, but once I tried that and then was asked by the MC to say something more!
Fifth, there is a cultural kick out notice! The MC announces, ‘The party has finished and we will see each other again.’
Tamie Davis is an Aussie living in Tanzania, writing at meetjesusatuni.com.