Thursday, 12 December 2013

Mikuláš, Anděl a Čert (St Nicholas, the Angel and the Devil) Pay a Visit to Prague!

It is almost certain, that if you were in the Czech Republic on the evening of December 5th, you would have witnessed the tradition of adults wandering the streets dressed as St Nicholas, an angel and a devil. Their purpose is to question the children on whether they have been good or bad over the year and reward or punish accordingly. 
Had you have been in my office in Prague that day, you would also have witnessed the same spectacle! All three made their way around the offices handing out angel and devil chocolates (at this point I have to question 2 things. Firstly, if this is indeed a children's tradition, what are they trying to say about us employees?! And secondly, should I be offended I received the devil chocolate?! Hmmm).
This day is to honor the name day of St Nicholas. It is not to replace the main Christmas day event, celebrated in the Czech Republic on 24th December, which is separate and also a public holiday, unlike on the 5th.
Young children are often scared by the trio, which is unsurprising seeing as if the child has been naughty they receive coal and potatoes and if deemed to have been particularly bad, are dragged off to hell in the devil's sack! Well that's one way of making sure they behave! For good behaviour, the child will receive sweets. 
I'm thinking this tradition should be introduced into Britain (Imagine the reduction in crime statistics we would have if these criminals had of been faced with that prospect as a child!).
Anyways, that's enough lamenting from me, so enjoy the picture below I have of the trio and also some colleagues and I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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