As mentioned in Foreign
Cultures Rule
by Derek ('15), Sinterklaas is a really big holiday in the
Low Countries.  Personally, I really enjoyed it.  What did you expect?  It involves chocolates and other sweets, so
why wouldn't I enjoy it?

I left mijn schoenen (my shoes) outside my door and when I
awoke in the morning, Sinterklaas had left me sweets and treats.  If you are over 10 years old you can feel
free to click the link below and continue reading (warning! Sinterklaas spoiler

Sinterklaas 030 - Copy.JPG

So actually, there is no Sinterklaas.  Since I live in a house of about 20 girls, we all left each
other treats in the dead of the night. 
Incidentally, when I was being Sinterklaas, I ran into Maria who was
also being Sinterklaas.  We pretended to
not notice each other.  Even though it
wasn't actually the patron saint of mariners coming from Spain with his trusty
slave, it was still exciting to receive lots of sweets, chocolates, and crafts
in my shoes.

I'll admit that treat I was most excited about was a pad of
sticky notes.  I just can't get away from
the obsessive compulsive side of myself, and I have been in distress in the
past three months because I forgot to pack post its.  (You may notice that I appear to be more
closely tied to the frugal side of myself because I didn't go out and buy a
stack).  Anyway, now I have sticky notes
and my life is much more complete.  To do
lists, notes to myself, and notes to friends will now be spilling out of my
room.  Sorry, but I don't think I'll be
doing any User Oriented Collaborative Design (UOCD, spring sophomore design
course) ideation, but maybe I'll write a few UOCD inside jokes out and post
them in my room (it's like a drawer, with shelves....get it? Drawer shelves).

In addition to the post it notes, the breakfast table was
completely decked out with sweets and we had a "Secret Sinterklaas" gift
exchange.  I received some chocolate liqueurs.  Yumm!  Completely
unrelated to the holiday itself, I went to the US Embassy with my Intercultural
Management course and met the Ambassador to Belgium, Howard Gutman.  It was quite the Sinterklaas and I really
enjoyed it all!

To update the Leuven

vs. Lima scoreboard:  Leuven gets 2 points for having an awesome
holiday (1 point for each shoe I left outside my door...These points aren't
completely arbitrary! Well, maybe they are). 
1 point for sticky notes.  2 points
for enabling UOCD inside jokes.  1 point
for chocolate liqueurs and 1 point for a trip to the US embassy.  That gives: Lima 35.4 and
Leuven 50.9.  We're getting close to an arbitrary winner, folks!

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