Saturday, December 4, 2010

Sinterklaas in Beijing

Yesterday, I saw it with my own eyes: Sinterklaas is also in Beijing! I know that the last couple years he made an effort to visit "his" children in Washington D.C., but he certainly also has made his way to the far East.

Funnily enough, we've found ourselves in Beijing (of all places) far more surrounded by Dutch culture than ever in Washington. We had (and still have!) some Dutch friends there, but when the Sinterklaas time rolled around, it was kind of hard to keep the story alive with just a carrot and a shoe, and not a lot of Dutchies around. (Truth be told: we had some great American friends who uncovered their Dutch roots and wrote poems and songs for Sinterklaas.)

Here though, we've gone from Halloween straight into the Sinterklaas season. A few weeks ago we went to an event of the Nederlandse Vereniging Peking (the Dutch Association in Beijing). After Simon and Thomas made some picasso-level art, a--to my American friends--politically incorrect black Piet showed up to throw some of his pepernoten across the room.

Then, Friday, Sinterklaas came to the boys' school, and tomorrow we are going to the Dutch Embassy, to spot the good old man again.

I sure hope he is busy writing poems for us tonight (Dutch Sinterklaas presents typically come with a poem). Also, Sinterklaas, I would really like a nice warm sweater for the winter here. If you can bring one from Spain, that would be great. (It's OK if it is made in China).


Sinterklaas at school.

Shoes filled with a small gift from Sinterklaas.

Simon next to Zwarte (Black) Piet.

Thomas completely happy with a handful of pepernoten.

1 comment:

  1. so if sinterklaas even came to your boys' school, is their school a Dutch school... or is Sinter not just Dutch but a wider north-european Klaas... or was it a guy in a red suit that could be interpreted as either Sinter or Santa depending on your preferences?