Its pretty fair to say that I'm more than just a little homesick the past few days. If I was home tonight, I'd be out mummering with my sisters.
Mummering or Jannying has been a tradition in Newfoundland since colonists from England brought the custom over in the beginning of the seventeenth century. Mummer comes from the old French ‘momer’ which means to wear a mask; pantomime. In particular, it refers to a masked or costumed merrymaker, especially at a festival.
Christmas revellers disguise themselves with old clothing and cover their faces with a hood, scarf or mask and go from house to house in their community sometime during the twelve nights of Christmas.
Mummers usually carry musical instruments so they can entertain; sing and dance in the houses they visit. In exchange for a cup of grog and a bit of Christmas cake of course. Then a great guessing game ensues as everyone tries to guess the identities of the mummers. if guessed correctly, the mummers remove their masks, if not they can keep them on.