Scottish traditions in every town. Turning on the Christmas lights
Everyone loves Christmas with all its traditions. One of my favourites is when we turn on the lights.
And now, it’s that time of year again, magical for both children and adults alike. Just when you’re getting fed up with dark, cold nights, thinking only of curling up by the fire and waiting until summer returns, a magical sparkle comes to Alyth. It’s the switching on of the Christmas lights.
Saturday evening saw the whole town turn out to follow the pipe band, kilts swirling and cheeks puffing as they marched up the street. Crowds of townsfolk fell in behind, walking up the main street as lampposts, shop windows and festive banners twinkled joyously. Santa, with his long white beard, was driven up the road, waving happily, ho-hoing and chucking sweets to the little ones. Children on parents’ shoulders stared wide-eyed, stretching to catch a sweet as Santa’s sledge went flying past.
Neighbours greeting neighbours, children being asked, “What’s Santa binging you? And dogs with flashing reindeer lights attached to their collars, wagging their tails.
And once arrived in the square, newly paved and bang on time, we all joined in with Father Christmas to count down to lights on 10, 9, 8… Nano seconds of trepidation in case it didn’t work. No need to be pessimistic. All the great planning and effort of local helpers paid off and “Wowwwww!!!” The square lit up with a twinkle that would put Oxford Street to shame. Little eyes out on stalks, glowing cheeks and bobble hats. The magic of Christmas.
A special Scottish tradition comes after Christmas. If you come to stay with us at this festive time you’ll discover how we celebrate New Year. In fact, it’s such a particular Scottish tradition that we even have our own name for it. Hogmanay. Find out what our students have learnt while living as part of the family