Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Celebrate Good Times - and Carnival!!!

Over this past week I have discovered (and realized) that Germany and many other European countries celebrate a little differently from us Americans. See, we know how to party all the time it seems, but they know how to soak it ALL up in a weekend - or week. Haha!

This week in Bonn/Cologne, and some other cities in Germany it is Carnival, or Karneval. Apparently it's biggest in our area too! What's funny is that I will only be here for half of the festivities. Tomorrow is when things really take off, the Thursday before the beginning of Lent. You know everyone has to get that partying and such out of their system before the 40 day fast from it all. Haha! There are a million and one traditions that surround this time and it begins with "Women's Carnival Day," where the women carry scissors with them around the city and cut men's ties off, and can kiss any man they wish. Praise Germany! Maybe I will continue this celebration back in the states... Haha... Just kidding. Really mom, just kidding.

Anyway, Thursday is just the celebration of women being able to participate in Carnival and pretty much be free to do anything. The two days following are filled with little parades and partying non-stop - and EVERYONE (men, women, children, animals) are all dressed up each day like it's Halloween. It's a lot like Mardi Gras in New Orleans, which was actually modeled after Carnival - just sayin'. Haha!

I will be missing that part as I will be in LONDON with mein Mutter. I am totally okay with that though... BECAUSE, I will be back on Monday right before the big parade starts! Rose Monday there is a HUGE parade in Cologne and also one in Bonn - though the BIGGEST one in all Germany is in Cologne... which makes me think I MIGHT try and stay up there for the parade after my plane lands on Monday. I'll only have a half hour to get wherever I need to in order to see the parade.... Hm.

Anyway, Monday the parade is apparently like nothing anyone has ever seen -so, I'm excited for that! Tuesday is called "Fat Tuesday" in America, but here I haven't heard much on that... All I know is that some people east fancy pastries... Really Tuesday is about what is called
, Nubbelverbrennung. That is meant to be the burning the spirit of carnival to atone for the sins committed during the carnival session... kind of intense. Haha! My question is, why don't you just not sin? The response, "What's the fun in that?!" Haha...

After Tuesday everything comes to a giant HALT for lent, as Ash Wednesday starts off the 40 days and 40 nights. It's really a cool cultural thing... even the kids are really into it all. Nico and Finni are both dressing up for school tomorrow (Nico a cowboy and Finn a tiger!), and the day is a half-day where the spend the entire time celebrating Carnival. The kindergarten was DECKED OUT today when I went to pick them up. There were streamers and balloons, and colorful fabric draped all over the stairs, walls, ceilings... It was AMAZING! Haha...

This is their biggest holiday, along with Christmas, but other holidays (though they are present) seem to fall more to the wayside. For instance, Valentine's Day is this Sunday, but no one is really going to be thinking about that - haha! I mean, there are some things out in stores for Valentine's Day, but it's not celebrated the same way here, and it's only started in the past 5-6 years. Kids don't give out Valentine's cards at school or anything like that, it is strictly given only to your lover. In German class today we were talking about giving them out, and the instructor had a look of slight horror when I suggested giving them to every kid in your kindergarten class. Haha!

I had the boys make Valentine's for their parents today, and it was fun, but I thought it odd that they hadn't really done that before... I'm sure other nannies did it with them, but it's just not important here. Plus, normally kids wouldn't make them for parents because it is only for the one you love romantically. It IS a bit less commercialized that way! Haha...

Sidenote: Their Valentine's were pretty cool if I do say so myself... and I do. :) I taught Nico how to cut a perfect heart too, which made him excited! Haha...

Anyway, I'm excited for the bit of excitement this weekend, but I am MORE excited to be with my familie in London! It's going to be SO fun! Saturday we're going to Salisbury, Stonehenge, Bath (Roman Baths & Royal Crescent), and Martin's Heron (AKA: Harry Potter's Privet Drive) on Saturday - all things I hadn't done before! Then, on Sunday we're hitting up some markets (one I didn't ever go to!) and then mom and I have the second half of the day to ourselves. Derek and Cami are going to a Villa game and out for V-day, and mom and I have a lists of ideas for things to check out. It's more about spending time with my mom for me! Haha... I am just SO excited to see her!

.... and THAT will be my hundredth post. YES!
*muah*

Song of the Day: It HAS to be Colbie Caillat's, I Never Told You. I am in LOVE with this song right now... It has to have the highest play-count on my IPod! Haha... It makes me pensive about things... Hm. Here's a live version of it - Enjoy! :)


4 comments:

Cami said...

It's all about your mom huh? So what am I, chump change? lol. I'm excited to see you sis!

The Knickerbockers said...

Bah. I like to pretend that I'm happy for you, but really, I'm super jealous :) You sound great-- I really am happy for you... sorta... :)

Sam said...

so, they don't celebrate holiday's in NZ like they do in America either. Someone even made a comment to me about knowing how to party, weird, right? Glad you had a great time!

themacmomma said...

Lindze!!! OMGosh!!! It's SISTER MCAFEE from VA (YW advisor)!!! How crazy is this? I guess you know Autumn and she served a mission where we live now, Amherst NY. I was just clicking and here I am! What a crazy world!
So you went to BYU, this I remember. Where are you now? What are you doing!? Just crazy!