2 Dec 2013


I visited an exhibition in Waterloo of a photographer who had taken pictures of "hidden, unknown places in Waterloo". This made me curious and I wanted to see which hidden places I had missed in the 38 years I am living here.

The result was very disappointing, not only were the photos not especially good, but the "hidden places" could have been in every town, like a tree, or a sculpture or a prairie and some houses and even the public swimming pool ! It took me not even 10 minutes to go through the whole exhibition and thought who sponsored this girl ? She must be a daughter or a family member of an important Waterloo council member. There is no other explanation. Fortunately on my way back home I found a nice gift for Christmas.

In the afternoon the sun came out and Ilona and I decided to go for a little walk. She lives in the Flemish part of Belgium, but only a few km far from me. There some houses were decorated for St Nicholas the real Santa Claus. It's a big celebration also in the Netherlands, especially for the children, as it is more celebrated then Christmas and the gifts are given by St. Nicholas, together with his assistant the Zwarte Piet (which means black Peter. This decoration was at her neighbor's house.

As it was quiet cold we went to the little wood nearby, where she just greeted her "private" tree, where she goes when she wants to think or when she is sad and needs some comfort. The fresh air did us good, and we returned home to have a cup of hot tea and watched the flames in the oven.

I had ordered this "Bleigiessen" (lead pouring) set on Internet and 3 days later it had already arrived. It is for New Year's Eve. I have wrote about this German custom here

A few years ago I had bought a special lamp, for light therapy. Light produces vitamin D which is necessary to keep your mood steady. This year I needed it again, we had the darkest November since 30 years, with only 28 h of sunshine. Normal would have been 66 h. They spoke about it on TV as many people suffer from seasonal depressions because of light insufficiency.

But on Sunday morning the sun was shining and I went to the Waterloo market, where I found an Advent's wreath and some decorations for it.

This year I am not up at all for Christmas celebrations, but for once Mr. G. complained that we didn't even have an advent's wreath with the four candles, which have to be lit one by one on the 4 Sundays before Christmas (another German tradition). So I spent the afternoon with making up the advent's wreath and together we also put a light garland outside in the hedge. That's enough for the moment.


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Jo said...

I can't imagine only 28h of sunlight! So glad you have that lamp. Please do decorations this year, I live for seeing your home at this time! (((Hugs))) Jo

A Lady's Life said...

We are into the Christmas mode this year.
We did one ginger bread house and have a gingerbread train to do and 4 more small houses
I wish I knew where my train is.

Linens and Royals said...

I haven't heard of Black Peter before but I like him.
I like the idea of having a special tree, I think I might find one for myself and hope a dog hasn't claimed it first.
What a disappointing exhibition, I suppose someone trying to be too clever.

Andrew said...

A German woman living in Brussels has a best friend who lives in the Flemish area. Go figure. How did you two meet?

I think I might like to have a private tree and give it a hug at times.

Vanessa Morgan said...

I love the idea of the exhibition. What a pity it was disappointing. Maybe they should do something similar with Belgium in general (and a better photographer). Have a lovely week.

Mara said...

I don't think it's just a German tradition, because everybody in my family (none of them German) used to do it too! And this year, I did it as well. Although my set-up was not elaborate by any means.

Loree said...

How funny the world is. You need your little lamp and I have to stay away from too much light or I will get a migraine.

Terra said...

Your advent wreath looks nice, and I celebrated St. Nicholas eve as a child in the USA, since my heritage is German and Belgian. I like the two figures at your friend's neighbor's house.