À forche dé crier Noué i' veint! (Shout Christmas long enough and it will come). Now in Jersey, we organise la Fête dé Noué which combines modern commercial desires with a bit of tradition. Let us look at some seasonal Jèrriais. To wish someone a Happy Christmas you say "Bouan Noué!" and for a Happy New Year, the phrase is "Bouanne Année!" It is the custom to send les cartes dé Noué (Christmas cards) and to decorate l'arbre dé Noué (Christmas tree).
Perhaps the most fun thing to do in Jèrriais at Christmas is to sing les cantiques dé Noué (Christmas carols). Some of the favourite cantiques dé Noué are "Rudolf lé chèr au rouoge nez"(Rudolf the red-nosed reindeer), "Atout jouaie dans l'temps jadis" (With joy in times of old - As with gladness, men of old), "Dans la Cité du Rouai Dâvi" (In the city of King David - Once in Royal David's City), "Des Bergers gardaient lus troupieaux" (Shepherds watched their flocks - While shepherds watched their flocks by night) and "Sonne les clioches" (Ring the bells - Jingle Bells).
Papa Noué (Father Christmas) is eagerly awaited by les mousses (the children) because he brings les présents (the presents). Les mousses used to hang up la cauche dé Noué (Christmas stocking) in the expectation that Papa Noué would come down la cheunm'née (the chimney) and leave eune orange et tchiques codrettes (an orange and some nuts) in la cauche dé Noué.
An old Christmas belief was that les vaques (the cows) would kneel down à mînniet la Sèrvelle dé Noué (at midnight on Christmas Eve) and so nobody would dare enter the cowshed at that time.
Lé housse (holly) and lé dgi (mistletoe) are two plants traditionally connected with Christmas, and the bird most connected with Christmas is lé picot (the turkey) - a staple for l'dîner d'Noué (Christmas dinner) along with lé podîn d'Noué (Christmas pudding).
Bouan Noué et bouanne année!
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