December 6, 2012

Christmas Ball, Day 6

It's so late and I've been staying up well past midnight to write these posts after I knit. I am calling it a night and will post more tomorrow.

Today is feast day of St. Nicholas and is celebrated in Belgium. That's why I chose to create a ball with a red bishop's hat - the hat of St. Nicholas. 
Here I am, wearing the bishop's hat of St. Nicholas. 
Sometime during the evening before December 6th, children receive gifts from "Sinterklaas" who is from Spain, and his helper(s) Zwart Piet. In my opinion, some aspects of the tradition are very bizarre and unnecessary, but it's part of the culture here.
Sinterklaas by Charlotte Dematons, is a beautifully illustrated book that presents some of the folklore and wonder associated with Sinterklaas and his Zwarte Pieten. I will admit, it's a shock to see what is on the pages, for a foreigner like me. They don't even sell this book in the United States.

Small gifts, cookies, chocolate and mandarins are given to children who were good that year. In my French class my teacher brought sweet treats for the class. I guess we have been good "children," though I must study more!

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