Eggs are a huge part of Albanian culture. They eat at least two hard-boiled eggs for breakfast. Everyone of my fellow Peace Corps volunteers show up to info sessions, language classes, and various activities with at least 2 eggs in their hands. It is pretty funny. Everyone is always trying to give away their eggs so their host parents feelings are not hurt.
Not only are eggs a large staple in the Albanian diet, but they are also used when celebrating holidays. For Easter, Albanians dye eggs, much like we do in the United States. The process is a bit different though. The eggs are placed into boiling water and while the eggs are boiling there is colored powder poured into the hot water along with the eggs. By dying the eggs this way, they come out in very bright colors and the color is pretty even on all areas of the eggs.
What is tradition on Easter is to visit all of your friends and family. During these visits children say Gazuar Pashket (Happy Easter), and then receive a brightly colored egg (much like our Halloween). Once visiting their family and friends the children gather together and play a game with the eggs they have collected. One person holds the egg in their fist with an end of the egg showing, while another hits the end of their egg on the end of the egg that is sticking out of their opponents fist. Whosever egg cracks is the loser. The winner wins all of the eggs that he/she is able to crack. It is a pretty fun game to play and it was very exciting to see all the kids in the streets playing this game last Sunday.
Most of the eggs that are eated and dyed are from the chickens that are EVERYWHERE! My family along with everyother volunteer's family has quite a few chickens walking all over their host family's property. Not only do they walk around in inclosed areas, but they are at the school, walking along side the road, in the middle of the cities, and everywhere else. One thing I have learned since being here is that roosters crow during all times of the day, morning, noon, and night.
I was walking home not too long ago and a line of chickens crossed the road infront of me. All I could think of at that moment was, "how did the chicken cross the road"....