Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Catalan Uncle Visits for Christmas

Caga Tio lives with us, but appears only at christmas.
The Caga Tió, or pooping uncle. A literal log that
drops figurative ones in the form of Christmas
presents.Specifically,the caga tió is a round piece
of tree trunk with a painted face and a traditional
red hat.On Christmas Eve, in lieu of leaving
milk and cookies out for Santa Claus, eager Catalan children
tap the caga tió with a stick and ask it to defecate gifts.

The children sing a song that, loosely translated, goes a
little something like this: Caga tió, hazelnuts and turrones,
don't caca herring, which are too salty, caca turrones which
are are more tasty. Thus encouraged, the caga tió performs much to
the wide-eyed delight of the child.For some reason the Catalans get
into the whole “going to the bathroom” thing at Christmas-time.
Caga Tio at Casa Currie likes only banana's, and in return leaves
peanut M& M's. How's that for Amercianizing a Catalan holiday custom?

This is as close as I get to experiencing our life in Barcelona
a holiday blast from the past.

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