Mink Machine

Kidnap the Sinterklaas in Amsterdam

I’m back in Amsterdam where they celebrate the Saint Nicholas’ eve today. This guy is the basis for the more familiar Santa Claus, but originally this eve was the celebration of Saint Nicholas, patron saint of children.

Sinterklaas differ from Santa Claus in several ways. Instead of a deer-driven carriage he arrives by boat from Spain! He also has a dark-skinned sidekick called Zwarte Piet (Black Pete), but this figure was quickly removed from the American traditions. If Pete encounters any bad children, he simply put them in a sack and bring them back to Spain! Perhaps not the most modern approach to children, but I have to admit it’s probably effective. And fun.

As I walked through the streets of Amsterdam, I almost started humming at the song from Nightmare before Christmas,

“Kidnap the Sandy Claws, lock him up real tight
Throw away the key and then turn off all the lights
Kidnap the Sandy Claws, throw him in a box
Bury him for ninety years then see if he talks”

…but quickly realized that it may be an inappropriate thing to do. Probably even more inappropriate than my Hiroshima dressing code. So it was time to revisit the Pancake Bakery at Prinsengracht instead.

Pancake Bakery At the Pancake Bakery in Amsterdam.

Comments

No comments yet.

Post a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Featured stories

Having champagne in Champagne

"We roamed the damp and chilly tunnels and stumbled upon a large barrel delivered by Napoleon himself."

A journey through Iran

"I woke up freezing on a Persian rug with aching back. Behind a corner I saw the damned rooster that kept me awake during many hours."

The dark days of Sarajevo

"The city survived on the edge of annihilation and has started to recover, but the stone walls still seem to cry out in lament of all the horrible things they have seen."

Bunker safari

"The area contains 54 excavated bunkers along with gun emplacements, scattered around the town’s most visible landmark."

The streets of Paris

"One of the advantages of repeated visits to a place is the leisure pace of awe and discovery while drifting slowly down the worn streets of the French capital."

New Years Eve in Sydney

"Opera House is seen in front of the massive fireworks in the harbor area, celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Harbour Bridge."