Quote of the week - The ninth door
What do you know about Santa Claus? Where did he come from? Has he ever been a child?
Of course we could rehash the usual stories now. I could tell you about St. Nicholas again, I could tell you about that he is dressed either as the bishop who really lived, or that he used to wear different colors like brown or blue and that Coca Cola really was the company to make Santa Claus look like most of us think of him today, in the red coat with the white fur, with white hair and and a long beard, ho-ho-ho and children on his knee who tell him their wishes.
This Christmas story is different, though. Imagine Lapland hundreds of years ago.
A boy named Nikolas loses his parents and little sister due to a tragic accident on Christmas, so the whole village decided to take care of him. Nikolas stays with each family for one year, then he moves on. To show his gratitude he carves toys for the children of his former families. After six years, however, a bad harvest and bad luck at fishing mean no one can afford to take him in.
That's when the carpenter Iisakki who lives far from the village that he only visits to sell his goods offers to take the boy for a year. Although the relationship isn't easy in the beginning as Iisakki is not fond of children, he teaches Nikolas how to be a carpenter. One night he catches him in the workshop where Nikolas is preparing the Christmas gifts for the village children. He forbids it at first, but then decides to help him. He also asks the boy to stay although the year is over.
When Iisakki gets old, he moves away, but leaves his house, workshop and money to Nikolas who has become like a son to him. Nikolas who has always been a bit of an hermit takes this as a sign to dedicate his life to Christmas and bring presents to the children of all the villages in the area.
We still won't get around the red suit, though! As the distance between the villages is quite big, Nikolas gets himself four reindeer for his sleigh from Hilla. He thinks they will be easy to train, but the reindeer have their own opinion about that.
Only when Nikolas follows Hilla's advice and has a red suit made, they start listening to him and the legend of Santa Claus is about to begin.
Christmas Story, Finland, 2007