Along the Pentland Road, 25 May 2017

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Friday 5 December

Beautiful day out here, broad sunshine and some clouds on the far horizon. 5C / 41F is quite cold, but there isn't much wind. By the middle of next week, we could see a very windy spell.

Today is 5 December, St Nicholas (or Sinterklaas in Holland). This year, there has been a discussion in the Netherlands about whether St Nick's helper, Black Peter (Zwarte Piet) is a throw-back to the bad ole days of slavery. Whether it is politically correct to portray Zwarte Piet as a serf, a servant. Well, a little while back I posted a rant to decry this misconception. St Nicholas lies buried in Spain, which was occupied by North African people who were dark-skinned. They referred to Spain as Al Andalus. Small wonder they still turn up in folklore. The Netherlands of the Seven Provinces fought an eighty-year war of independence against the Spain of Philip II, between 1568 and 1648. I think we, Dutch, should ditch the bullshit and hold on to one of the few pieces of what I still regard as Dutch culture. Not to let it be eclipsed by Santa Claus (American invention, sorry), or political correctness. Please. Alsjeblieft :-)

The Christmas Illuminations were switched on yesterday, and that means that the funfair is in town as well.

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