Monday, December 6, 2010


December 6 is St. Nicholas' Day; our Dutch Christmas when Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet fill childrens' wooden clogs with presents and sweets!  Children are told that a record is kept of all the things they have done in the past year and that good children will get presents from Sinterklaas but bad children will get chased by Zwarte Piet with a stick!  
What could be more endearing to children than a giant man clad in red velvet
on a white horse whose manservant threatens to beat you with a stick?

I didn't pack my wooden clogs or speculaas recipe, but I am expecting Sarah to procure red velvet robes and a white steed to parade through our yard today.  And although I did not leave out a shoe to collect my gifts, I am expecting Grolsch, gouda cheese, tulips, and a miniature windmill in the Christmas package my mom sent.

Sancta Claus goed heylig Man!
Trek uwe beste Tabaert aen,
Reis daer me'e na Amsterdam
Van Amsterdam na Spanje
Daer Appelen van Oranje
Daer Appelen van granaten
Die rollen door de straaten. [...]

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