Saturday, November 12, 2011

. . . a different kind of Claus

Today marked the arrival of Sinterklaas in the Netherlands! He came from where he resides in Spain and spends the next few weeks traveling around, greeting children, and preparing for Sinterklaas Day on December 5th. Interestingly enough, Sinterklaas rides a white horse and has his helper, Zwarte Piet (Black Peter), everywhere he goes. We even witnessed a few Zwarte Piets today while at the Centrum. Have a look . . .

video



There were many people dressed as Zwarte Piet all around the Centrum, including children, adults, or store clerks, like this one:

Yes, her face is painted completely black

If you want to know more about how the Dutch celebrate this long-standing tradition, I highly recommend this reading of Six to Eight Black Men by David Sedaris -- well worth the time if you want to view the story of St. Nicholas from a different lens. ;)

I can't wait for Liam to get his picture made with the former Bishop of Turkey! No, seriously, he is -- but he's been good this year so I don't think Sinterklaas or any Zwarte Piet will kick him or stuff him in a sack to take back to Spain. I'm not kidding. Listen to the story above if you don't believe me. All I'm gonna say is it's much worse than coal . . .

Happy Sinterklaas to everyone!
~Jessi

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