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December 20

Apalpador

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In some shires from high mountains in the west of Galicia, Courel, Lóuçara and in Cebreiro, still remains the tradition of The Apalpador, a giant who worked as coal miner. During Christmas he comes down from mountains where he lives into the villages. He visits the children and checks to make sure they have full bellies. He makes sure that they are all well fed and wishes them a year filled with delicious food. He gives all of them handfuls of chestnuts to remember his visit and then returns to the mountains until next year. Miista founder and designer Laura Villasenin grew up in the town of Ordes in Galicia, in the Northwest of Spain. One of the many traditions she grew up with included that of The Apalpador, a friendly giant who lives high up in the mountains. Every year at Christmas time he comes down to the surrounding villages and feels all the children's tummies to make sure that they are not hungry. He travels with sweets and chestnuts to feed any hungry children he comes across.

O Apalpador felicita o Natal from Jessica on Vimeo.

Laura's sister in law made this little animation of The Alpapador that we think it just entirely adorable. And 3-D to boot! Alpapador dates pre-Christianity and is part of a revival throughout Galicia in an effort to revive the traditions that are deeply rooted in the country's rich history. And we have to mention that Laura believed in the Alpalpador to be a real man as recently as today! By researching this we dashed her childhood beliefs, but Alpalpador lives on the hearts of Galician children like our dear Laura! Writing this made us realize that traditions of this sort must be more prevalent than we know. So, we want to hear about yours! If your family has incorporated any traditions beyond the standard Christmas celebration please let us know! We'd love to hear your stories and learn more about the traditions of our world. You can leave a comment, hit up our Facebook, or email us at info@miista.com! Happy Holidays everyone!
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