Lelo

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The village of Shukhuti is known for an annual Easter tradition, Lelo burti. Two villages, Zemo and Kvemo (Upper and Lower) Shukhuti, compete with each other in a game of “no rules street rugby”. The object of the game is to move the lelo burti (ball) across the the goal, delineated by natural boundaries within each village. On the eve of Easter, villagers prepare the ball with a blend of black wine, honey, and pomegranate juice. They then fill the ball with this mixture, as well as sand. The lelo ball will eventually weigh 16 kilograms. The winning team will take the lelo burti to the tomb of a villager to the honor of the soul of the deceased. The Lelo game is a very dangerous, difficult game that sometimes ends with deaths. The last time a person died during a Lelo match was in the year 2015.

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