Thursday, April 2, 2015

Secret of the Easter witches

Tiina Kaila, Leena Airikkala 1989: Pääsiäisnoitien salaisuus

The Witch Sabora is busy. At Kyöpelinvuori (Ghost’s mountain) witches make chocolate Easter eggs for children. The cook Nanneli is already expecting Sabora. The Grand Witch is coming to inspect the making of the eggs. She is happy with the eggs but soon to her horror realizes that she lost her ring. The secret ring has to be found at once, otherwise there will be trouble.

 The Grand Witch summons all witches and tells them about the ring. If it is not found, all witches will vanish. The witches search everywhere but, they cannot find the ring.

Tiiti tells them she found an odd looking ring from the lawn and has taken it to the ring forge among the other rings. All the witches rush to the forge, but they cannot find the ring. It must be inside one of the chocolate Easter eggs.

 The witches decide to break the eggs, but there are too many. Time is running out and the witches decide to deliver the eggs and then watch who gets the secret ring.

Sabora observes the eggs taken to Saara. Saara notices the eggs as soon as they are delivered and opens the first egg. It has the most beautiful ring she has ever seen. Saara puts the ring in her finger and as soon as she has done that, she turns into a witch. Saara says all she needs now is a black cat and a coffee pot. They appear, the ring grants wishes. Next Saara wants orange soda in the coffee pot, and there is. Saara’s brother Lasse wants to be witch, too and Saara wishes him to be one. The children decide to go for a broom flight. A broom and a rake take them toward the other witches and the children follow them all day.

Saara and Lasse follow the witches
The children fallow the witches to Kyöpelinvuori. The Grand Witch is sure they all are finished. Saara realizes that she has the ring. Saara returns the ring. The witches are grateful and set a big table outside full of Easter delicacies. After their celebration, the witches take the children home.

Finland is a very homogenous nation, but at least in Easter traditions there is variation between the east and the west. When I was a kid, we dressed up as witches and made decorative willow branches and then went door to door (virpominen). We had a rhyme, where we wished all well for the coming year and if they would give us candy, we would give them the branches. Kind of like trick or treat, but Easter time. This happened on Palm Sunday. Now my cousin lives near Vaasa, in Ostrobothnia. They too did this but on Holy Thursday and it is called “trullittaminen”. So our childhood tradition came from the east and the Ostrobothnian from Sweden. Here’s more about the Finnish Easter tradions.

The chocolate surprise eggs are not a Finnish invention. The Kinder eggs are known in all Europe and we laugh at the American’s who have banned this great invention, because children might suffocate in the toy inside. Yeah, guns are much safer.

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