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A trip to Saint-Nicolas-de-Port on saint Nicolas' Day

6 Décembre 2014 , Rédigé par Maryse Publié dans #Saint Nicolas

A trip to Saint-Nicolas-de-Port on saint Nicolas' Day

Each year I go to Saint-Nicolas-de-Port on the day of the celebration of saint Nicolas. This afternoon was grey but not cold for my walk in the town.

This time I had to park further away and I walked up the main street and had a look at shops on my way to the basilica. I entered through the side door, stopped near saint Nicolas' statue where plenty of candles were lit and I noticed the picture of Sire de Réchicourt on the right. There were a few pilgrims inside already. Then I walked out through the back door.

I went further up in town to saint Nicolas' market. It was quite similar to the one I saw last year. There were hand made things (jewels, cards, toys...) and products with saint Nicolas printed on them (balloons, biscuits, beer, tiles, cards...). The music was a bit loud but pleasant and children were already asking for cotton candy.

A trip to Saint-Nicolas-de-Port on saint Nicolas' Day

Then it was time for me to go back home. I walked through the basilica again, there were more people near the statue and the relics.

I decided to stop at the tourist office nearby and... saint Nicolas was there ! We spoke together, reminded the time my children were so surprised when he told them not to leave their sweets near their father who would eat them. "How does he know, Mum ?" "Well, it is a long story, he also met your father when he was a child."

I wished the good saint a pleasant evening, knowing he would be very busy in the coming hours. And by arriving near my car, bells started ringing, it was the song for saint Nicolas, to celebrate the patron saint of Lorraine.

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Mike 06/12/2014 17:42

I am sorry to say that most of us on TRAB lived in a cocoon. We were not aware of many of the local traditions. So much of what you write is news to me. We only saw things that we would come across in our travels. However the local History except for the War Memorials and Military Cemetery's was not to our knowledge. Also maybe some Officers were invited to certain celebrations but the troops knew nothing.

Maryse 06/12/2014 19:21

As the procession to celebrate saint Nicolas is the 768th one, it did exist when you were in France but you were on the other side of Nancy. And I am nearly sure something was organized in Nancy too on the 6th of December or the nearest week end, but it was maybe not as big as nowadays. In the 1960s in Lorraine we still had toys on saint Nicolas's day and not on Christmas day. Christmas was religious only.