“Kalin imeran archondes” (“good day Lords”)

(photo)”Children singing the Christmas carols”:

painting by Nikiforos Lytras

carols-lytrasIf someone rings your doorbell early in the morning of  24, 31 December or 5 January, don’t think it’s a naughty neighbor determined to wake you up, it will probably be children singing the “calanda”, the Greek  Christmas carols. These are sung by groups of children or, at least two, accompanied by little triangles, accordions, or guitars. As you open the door, the children will ask you: “Na ta poume?” (Shall we say them?). Your line here is: “Na ta pite” (go ahead and say them). After 25 groups of carol singers you may say: No, thank you, or just not open. Now, you should know that our calanda are very cheerful and joyful songs, they go way back in history (like everything else here), you will absolutely love them, you won’t understand a word because the language is formal Greek with a touch of Ancient Greek. Therefore, open your purse and give the little ones some money, even if you hated them, just for the time they spent learning all these words! You know, in the past homeowners offered the children sweets and pastries, but now…you can’t really pay for your PLAYSTATION with melomakarona, can you?

We’ll be back with more about Christmas in Greece.

* “children singing the Christmas carols”: by Nikiforos Lytras


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