Monday, January 7, 2013
Three Kings Day
On a warm Saturday evening everyone in the village was standing in front of the town hall, looking out to sea, listening to Christmas songs in Catalan. It was the Night of the Three Kings and they were soon to arrive by traditional mallorcan boats. Three Kings Day or Epiphany is a big holiday in Catalunya, and the time that presents are received rather than at Christmas. Boys and girls lined the dock holding lovely, multicoloured paper lanterns, many of them homemade, to light the way for the Kings.
Eventually, the Kings and their retinues make their way to the town hall and climb up to the first floor balcony, where they are introduced by the mayor. Each king addressed the audience with various messages, "You shall be good kids." The crowd applauds. "You shall tidy your rooms," Lots of laughter. After more speeches the Kings made their way out to the street for more photo ops and chats slowly moving towards the ballroom. Each child in the village is called up to the stage to receive their present from one of the Kings. Finally, it is all over. Everyone heads home for dinner and more importantly to leave out some sweet wine and pastries for the visiting Kings, when they visit overnight to leave present for everyone in the family. Sometimes they even come with their camels.