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More Country Fun Facts

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Many seem to enjoy the Cultural quizzes and getting into the groove of globetrotting, albeit being desk-bound (smile), so let’s continue with the fun facts Q&A we had in the previous months. Here are the questions for October:

Q1. Where was the Chinese chequers (checkers) board game invented? The game is neither a variation of checkers nor did it originate in China, or any part of Asia. It was invented In Germany, in 1892, under the name “Stern-Halma”, as a variation of the older American game Halma. The Stern (German for star) refers to the board’s star shape (in contrast to the square board used in Halma). It is a strategy board game played by two, three, four, or six people, individually or with partners. (source: Wikipedia.)

Q2. How long is the celebration of the Festival of Light for the Hindus? It is a five-day celebration for the Hindus. During this period, devotees purchase gold and precious metals for good fortune, decorate and make Rangolis, light up diyas, and offer prayers (pujas) to the Goddess of Wealth, Lakshmi, Lord Yama, Lord Krishna, and Lord Indra. The last day, Bhai Dhooj, is a day to celebrate the sacred bond between brothers and sisters.

Q3. Which German bears have gone round the world many times? Surprise, surprise – the answer is the Gummy bears (Gummibär). These are small, fruit-gum candies, similar to a jelly baby, but shaped in the form of bears. Haribo is a popular brand, but if you have any special dietary restrictions, you may want to check if it is the halal or vegetarian version.

Q4. Who is Jack-o’-lantern? According to the Irish legend, it was a drunkard who bargained with Satan and was doomed to roam the Earth with only a hollowed turnip to light his way. Today, Jack-o’-lantern is either a carved turnip, pumpkin or root vegetable lantern, often featured as part of the Halloween decorations.

Q5. Which country started the Day-light saving time practice? On April 30, 1916, Germany became the first country to enact day-light saving time to conserve electricity. Weeks later, the United Kingdom followed suit and introduced “summer time.”

Well, we hope you have enjoyed the questions. You can click the Youtube links below for more fun facts (Youtube clips credit: Office holidays).

1st Oct: China National Day:

3rd Oct: German Unity Day:

What is Yom Kippur:

Holiday in a hurry – Diwali:

Again, please keep your good humour to use these newfound facts to have fun, friendly, light-hearted conversations and not debate as an expert.

Albert Camus once said: “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower”; Yes, Autumn shows us how beautiful it can be to let things go. Enjoy!

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