From my recent trip to Rotterdam – it really is a fascinating city. Combining old industrial spaces with traditional Dutch housing and very bold modern development.
This is how Yemaja deals with the heat… and with mornings… and just about anything really.
The Package Game.
The rules will vary from place to place but the game is always about acquiring packages. In my family everyone will bring two wrapped objects all of which are placed on the table.
For round one a die is passed around and everyone will roll it once in turn. If you roll a 6 you will be allowed to pick a package from the table and pace it in front of you. This continues until all the packages are claimed. Then the game continues in earnest.
For round two a timer will be set for an amount of time known only to the person responsible for setting it. Then the die is passed around the table once more (usually at a furious pace). Roll a 6 and you are allowed to steal a package from one of the other participants. The packages sitting in front of you when the time is up are yours to keep.
This game often gets very nasty, personal and vindictive – which is what makes it so funny. It is quite possible to form a very emotional attachment to certain packages and end up in vicious duels with other players.
Also the choosing of a package is an art form in itself. You get points for originality. You get points for being able to disguise an object as something else. You get points for alluring wrapping and/or sounds coming from within the package. The contents of the package should be something unexpected. Something awesome but useless. Something that makes you laugh when you open it – be it because you won a kind of candy you are allergic to or because you can’t believe you spent 3 of your lucky rolls on winning two rolls of toilet paper.
The unveiling of the tree.
On Christmas Eve – on the 24th – after dinner and dessert is over with. The tree is prepared and lit behind closed doors. Then it is revealed and everyone goes “ooooh”.
The follows Christmas carols sung while walking hand in hand around the tree after which presents are distributed. The task of being the “Nisse” usually goes to the youngest person capable of rational thinking present. He or she dons a red hat and hands out presents from under the tree. It is considered an art form to be able to keep presents flowing at a reasonable pace.
This was really “Christmas Traditions III-VI” I suppose. Also these traditions are highly specific to my family. Go one household over and things are likely to be completely different.