Submitted by WeBarcelona on 29 December, 2016 - 11:11
The Three Kings brought to baby Jesus after his birth gifts: incense, gold and myrrh (the incense for god, the gold for king and the myrrh for man), nowadays these have become toys and the baby Jesus are all the children. Now the camels no longer are able to travel all the way from east to west, part of the tour is done by plane, boat, bus or any means of transportation that the visiting city or town makes them available. In Barcelona, for example, the Three Kings arrive by boat. And the arrival reception becomes a massive and a colorful parade.
The parade of the Kings is a very special moment for children. The Three Kings travel around the cities and towns in carriages accompanied by his assistants and magical creatures, throwing sweets and goodies during the tour. It is a deeply rooted tradition in Spain and other Spanish-speaking countries, an evening of excitement and color in which children are prepared for the great magical moment of the year. The Three Kings (Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar) arrive on January 5 and then, at night they are visiting house by house leaving toys and gifts for every child (don´t forget they are magicians), leaving the toys that every child has previously requested in his letter to the Three Kings. The pages of the Kings are responsible for the collection of the letters, which they recollect in many parts of the city, and to give them to their majesties, but is is also possible to send the letter online using a form of the Council website or give it to the many postmen accompanying the Three Kings during the parade. The Kings will try to do what they can to meet all the demands of the children who have always been good (or at least not too bad). To those who have not been that good, they leave coal (but edible and sweet, and anyway, no child will receive only coal, they will get toys and coal as a warning for the coming year to improve their behavior).
On the 5th at night the children go to bed, but it will not be easy to sleep for them. The emotion is intense, the Three Kings and their camels will enter their homes and the children want to stay awake to discover them. But the remaining energy reaches the limit and exhausted, they fall asleep. On waking up, their faces light up, the hearts race and they feel the magic again and in a hurry they leave their rooms to find the treasure. Maybe there are some disappointments when the requested gifts do not completely coincide with the received ones, but it will be soon forgotten after having opened all the packages and started to play with the toys and showed them proudly. But that's not all. Los Reyes Magos (the Three Kings) also know the address of grandparents, uncles and other relatives of the children, and therefore there a still places left to look at gifts.