Mikulas, St. Nicholas' day, is on the 5th December and marks the start of Christmas for Czech people.Late afternoon on the 5th December three figures move slowly around all the different city squares: St. Nicholas, an Angel and the Devil.
St. Nicholas asked all the kids if they have been a good kid during the past year and also asked them to sing a song. Then the kids would get candy treats from them if they sang or were good. Eric dressed up as a Cert (devil) and ran around trying to scare little kids and then gave them some candy.
Naughty children don't get sweets, they get a sack of black coal or potatoes. If they have been really naughty, they will be placed in the Devil's sack and taken to hell. As you can imagine, little kids are terrified of the Cert. My mom used the whole "Cert taking you away if you're bad" card many times. I used to think there was a cert living on the top floor of our building and would freak out when my mom tried to take me up there. I grabbed onto the railing and wouldn't go up there.
Check out some of the pictures I got: