(This is a side note. For today's A to Z post, scroll down one.)
It is Easter Monday, which means one very important thing in Hungary: It is Sprinkling Day!
(Easter Monday is a national holiday in Hungary, much like January 1st)
Yes, people, this is a fertility rite. What gave it away?
Sprinkling Day also tends to turn into a popularity contest: Girls keep count of how many boys showed up at their house. It is, essentially, Valentine's Day meets Spring Break meets Trick-or-Treating.
In some areas girls were allowed to return the sprinkling favor on Easter Tuesday. Sometimes the sprinkling took on more of a trick-or-treat quality: If the sprinklers were not allowed in a house, they would prank the family. According to my grandfather, they once propped up a barrel of water against the front door, and rang the doorbell. (Then again, that might just have been my grandpa, not tradition).
If you know a Hungarian woman, don't forget to sprinkle them today. Keeps 'em fresh.