søndag den 18. maj 2014

'Studenterhuer', Truck Rides - Exciting Times to Come.

Hello Every body!

I thought for this weeks post, I would do something a little old-school, and just have a little chat to all of you about the more personal things going on in my life at the moment. Over the next three weeks, I have some very exciting moments coming up, with regards to me graduating high school, and I thought it would be a nice little relaxing sunday afternoon read for many of you. Maybe you live in denmark, and are going to experience some of these things soon as well , or maybe you've already experienced some of these things, and want to think back on the lovely memories, or maybe you're just curious about some specific traditions that the danes have when it's graduation time - either way, I hope you have a nice mug of tea in your hand, and that you are curled up in a comfortable seat, and that you're ready to read.

First lets talk 'Studenterhuer' - that's pronounced - "student-terr-hoo-err", and is basically the danish word for 'Student Caps', and look like the ones on the picture below.

The student caps are actually common in various different European counties, I know for sure that the other Scandinavian countries have them too. In Denmark, every year at around May/June, you start to see these white or black caps, on people's heads everywhere. The people wearing these hats are graduates of high-school, and now wear the hats as a token of the completion of their secondary school education.
The hats all have a different colored band (red, black, purple, dark blue or light blue) which represent the type of secondary school education the individual has completed. Recently, they also introduced a band which has flags from all over the world printed on it (I'll try and find a picture), and this is for the students who've taken an International line of study, such as the International Baccalaureate. This year, I'm getting one of these!!!

Also as per danish tradition, (adjusted slightly to the IB ways), I will get my hat on the day of my final exam. The idea is that students walk out of their final exam and are greeted by friends and family who present them with flowers and of course the hat.  A few days later however, we have to return the hat to the school, after which there is a big ceremony, where the school admin then presents us with the hats again….Sounds like a lot of effort for just a hat right? But I suppose it's the symbolism behind the hat which makes it worth all the hype.

Then around the end of June (or beginning of June in my school's case), all the graduates from each school mount a truck and spend the day driving from house to house of all the graduates. Traditionally, it was a wagon that the graduates mounted on, but with the increasing number of graduates, now it's moving trucks that are commonly used. The trucks are decorated with green branches (no idea the reasoning behind this), flags, balloons and banners, by the class below, and the teachers, and then the graduating class, all get into the truck, and spend the day driving from one graduate's house to the other, until all, or almost all the graduates' houses have been visited. At each house, the graduates are congratulated by family and friends of the graduate's house that's being visited, and are offered food and drinks, before leaving 15 minute later to drive to the next graduate's house, to do it all over again.
On the streets, cars tend to honk, and people on the sidewalks tend to shout out "Tillykke", as a way of congratulating the graduates. My class is participating in this tradition as well. I've linked below a picture of a group of graduates that were passing by my house last year, so you get the idea...

And that's about it for today's lesson on Danish culture and traditions. I hope you liked going back a little to the times where all I did on here was blab on about things going on in my life….I definitely enjoyed writing bout it. I will put up a few posts with my own pictures, after I go through these traditions myself. In the meanwhile, you can look forward to an April favourites coming up soon - it may even be a midweek post if I'm efficient.

Lots of love,

Mimi xxx