So, it's December now. Time to officially break out the Christmas music and drink Glühwein like there's no tomorrow. (Let's pretend I haven't been doing that for weeks already.) Germans do Christmas in a big way, and I won't deny that this was the time of year that I was most looking forward to spending in this country. So far, I've had quite a few Christmassy experiences, which began rather early, considering the school's orchestra started rehearsing their Christmas pieces in September! It even inspired me to download a CD of German traditional Christmas carols. (I'm listening to it right now actually.) I have also been taking every opportunity to purchase all the Christmassy foody goodness in the supermarkets!
|Tastefully arranged Christmas foodstuffs. (That house thing is filled with Lebkuchen.) Mmmmmm....|
But the most exciting thing (by far) has been the much-anticipated visit from my appropriately-festively-named friend, Holly, which I had been looking forward to for weeks.
A few minor setbacks occurred on the day of her arrival, namely Holly's delayed flight and the perilous combination of giant puddle and passing lorry that resulted in me getting thoroughly drenched (not to mention pointed and laughed at!) on the way to the station to go and pick her up from Hanover. However, these paled into insignificance compared to my gleeful excitement as I waited for her at the airport. I'm pretty sure our joyful reunion at the arrivals gate would have been enough to convince Scrooge of the merits of love and Christmas cheer, or at the very least earn us a place in the final scene of 'Love Actually'.
The next day (6th December, a.k.a. Nikolaustag in German land) we headed off to Lemgo's one-weekend-only Christmas market, Kläschen, but not before discovering makeshift paper Stiefel (boots) on the doorstep, filled with chocolate and goodies courtesy of the lovely Reichelts (I mean, ahem, Nikolaus).
|Makeshift paper Stiefel filled with goodness. (Also, yes that is knitting wool...)|
|Appropriate levels of snow-related excitement.|
It was certainly nice to see good old Lemgo in its Sunday best, decked out with quaint little huts selling all the foody goodness you could desire (plus plenty of drink-related goodness as well!), and assorted handicrafts, not to mention a bizarre array of canned goods, hideous Spongebob Squarepants hats, and JML-esque kitchen apparatus. It wasn't anything particularly spectacular though. At least, not for Germany! It seems like every town here has a Christmas market. OK, so there are markets in the UK too, but we totally stole this idea from the Germans!
One of my favourite markets so far has to be the Bielefeld one (well, to be fair it's the only really decent-sized one I've properly seen, but still). I went there last Monday with some other assistants, and visited again with Holly on Saturday night.
|Part of the food court area - here we had some sort of Glühwein/Punsch/-bowle thing with lots of sugar in it. Lecker!|
Ich freu mich riesig drauf!