Not so scary Halloween pumpkin

by - Thursday, November 30, 2017

Not so scary Halloween pumpkin
In my country, we do not celebrate Halloween. At least not the way they do it in America. Except for sporadic costumed parties (mainly intended for students) for us October 31st is the completely normal day. Like any other. But that does not mean that we do not have horror stories from which the hair rising on the head and entire body shudder and have goosebumps. But, more about that later.
We do not turn our homes into haunted castles from which zombies, witches, and werewolves leap off, and we don't give sweets to children in cute costumes (our kids do not wear them). We do not gouge pumpkins into scary figures, but we use them for something much, much nicer. And tastier. For one of my favorite treat - a traditional Serbian pumpkin pie - called Bundevara
One of the tasks of the members of Makin's Clay® Design Team was to create something for Halloween. I don't like ghosts, bats and some of these creepy creatures, so I remembered gouged pumpkins. I'm sorry, but something in this hairy head of mine just does not allow me to connect a pumpkin with something terrible. Whenever I think of the pumpkin I just remember my grandmother's delicious pumpkin pie. And pumpkin baked with sugar in the oven. And pumpkin risotto. And the thick, creamy pumpkin soup... Uh, I'm hungry!
As you can see, in my hairy head pumpkin is associated with delicious food, and it's simply not possible for me to create an intimidating figure. My pumpkin made of Makin's Clay® looks perfectly normal, such as those we use for making pies. Sweet and delicious. And it can be worn as well as a brooch and as a necklace. Again I create a multi-functional piece of jewelry.
Not so scary Halloween pumpkin

And now a bit about those horror stories... Do you know that vampire is one of the Serbian words (almost certainly the only one) that is widely accepted in all languages of the world? Vampir (vampire) is Serbian word which comes from our ancient (pagan) religion, and it's old about 1.500 years. In recent years, thanks to social networks, we use a lot of English words in everyday speech (liking, sharing, printing...), but it's nice to know that the rest of the world, especially those from English-speaking countries, uses one of our words. Maybe not every day, but then at least before, during and after Halloween. By the way, the word vampire is, since 1734, included in the Oxford English Dictionary and with the specified Serbian origin.
Serbian folk tales are full of gruesome narratives about vampires. In these stories, some of which date back to the time before Christianity, vampires are not even a bit sweet and lovely as Edward Cullen (and the gang) from the Twilight saga by Stephenie Meyer. Oh, no! They are described as very, very frightening creatures. As inanimate beings that you definitely would not want to meet. Scarier than the Count Dracula (for which they, after the publication of the novel by Irish author Bram Stoker in 1897, have become so popular all over the world). There are even written historical documents related to vampires, or at least the belief in their existence. For fear of vampires, Serbs were, even after receipt of Christianity, burned their deceased, fearing that they would otherwise arise from the dead, which is why in Dušan's Code (1349) is explicitly prohibited the excavation of corpses and their throbbing or burning. 
The notion of a vampire in western Europe was first mentioned in the Austrian magazine "Vossiche Zeitung", number 98, which was published in 1725, at a time when Austrian Empire government of Serbia in the south to town Stalać. The magazine writes about a certain Petar Blagojević (sometimes written as Peter Plogojowitz) from village Kisiljevo. Petar, who is considered the first known vampire (and not, as many thinks, the iconic Romanian prince Vlad the Impaler), died in 1725, and two months after his death residents of the area start inexplicably to die (nine of them in a week). Before death, all of the residents claimed that late Petar appears to them. Frightened villagers requested permission from the Austrian authorities to open Blagojević case. In the presence of the priest that is done, as well the ritual with stabbing (after what allegedly fresh blood is leaked from his dead body) and burning the corp. The mysterious deaths were then stopped. All this is, also, written in the report of astonished captain Frombald send to authorities in Vienna. 
Serbs have even more horrifying stories about vampires (eg, about the vampire Sava Savanović), as well of various other mysterious creatures, but I do not want to scare you so much that you start to run away from my blog. And, long post is beginning to be my habit. So... For those who celebrate - Happy Halloween! For those who do not - I recommend you to make Bundevara (traditional Serbian pumpkin pie) by this recipe. And for both of you I say - make something (perhaps pumpkin) with Makin's Clay®. And... Beware of vampires.
Not so scary Halloween pumpkin
Editor's Note: This post was originally published on my old blog on Helloween (October 31) 2015, and has been completely revamped and updated.

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