The Night Of The Chicken: Fasnet In Southern Germany

Its that time of year again folks!! That time when everyone searches in their attics or basements for those super creepy (yet expensive) costumes that show the story of their town. As we dust off these costumes the sense of town pride starts to shine through the gray winter skies. I try to compare it to how I feel when I talk about Syracuse. I get the same kind of city pride and it can NOT be broken. Ever.

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This year happened to be pretty special for us. Each year a different town hosts the entire weekend festivities for the surrounding towns. Toblerone’s hometown is associated with a completely different circle of towns so we were really excited to find out that not only was our current town hosting it (saving us from having to drive somewhere) but his hometown also got a special invitation to join in this particular festival in our town. Karneval (Fasnet) was going to be AWESOME this year. And that, my friends, it most certainly was. It was great to have everyone come to our house to “pre-game” before the parade.

And just a side note…The costumes for Toblerone’s town are technically Roosters but I call them big Chickens. All the same right?

This year there are a few different costumes than the years before since we were in a different area than previous years. Oh and the witches got me and my friend. They took us…brought us into their “Witches House” which was their float basically and they gave us shots of something strange. But it was definitely fun this year! Better than the years before since the weather is unusually warm and we haven’t had snow since early December so this year was perfect!!

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Our kidnappers...

Our kidnappers…

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This girl got stolen 3 or 4 times. I think at this point she just gave up the good fight.

This girl got stolen 3 or 4 times. I think at this point she just gave up the good fight.

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Me and my other darling American friend :-)

Me and my other darling American friend 🙂

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I got your wig!!

I got your wig!!

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The whole family gets in the spirit

The whole family gets in the spirit

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These were the absolutely the worst costumes for me. I took this picture and then hid.

These were the absolutely the worst costumes for me. I took this picture and then hid.

Where we were held captive!

Where we were held captive!

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Ghostbusters Band!!

Ghostbusters Band!!

Toblerone and my Father-in-law

Toblerone and my Father-in-law

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Which costume is your favorite? Would any of these win costume contests on Halloween? How much do you think one of these costumes cost?

Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Fasching Time Again

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The only thing I can think of to describe what Fashing is probably would be similar to Halloween with a bunch of drunks putting on a circus show. The one thing that is really cool is there is an ‘assigned’ costume to each town based on that towns history or back story. Toblerone’s town costume is the Rooster!

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Last year was my first Fashing or “Carnival” and it was an incredible experience. Three…very long days…of drinking and dancing in a chicken costume. If you missed the experience last year, please click here to go read about it.

This year I was dreadfully ill but managed to make it out for the small parade and see the giant tree get put up. This tree is also similar to the May tree (Mai Baum) and the one they place for Christmas too but it was fun to watch them put this up as if we were in the 1500s. Very old school but keeping with tradition. My most cherished memories so far in Germany are those I’ve spent relishing in their traditional and stripped down holidays. Sadly, the US is much too commercialized and I’m really loving this easy paced life that doesn’t have much to do with money and such. But THAT, my friends, is a topic for another day!
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So, we watched the mini parade, people handed me drinks of champagne and schnapps as they passed by, and the costumes were sweet and creative. For the parade, the different clubs (Music, Dance, Sport, etc) picked a theme or costume that is outside of the usual “Rooster.” Take a peak at a few!
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Another year of really fun times with the crazy Germs and their weird traditions! However, I wouldn’t want to be experiencing any other place at the moment. (Except Ireland but still trying to work the husband into that idea!)

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And now it’s lent time and I’ve given up alcohol. 11 days without! Phew! Glad to know I’m not an alcoholic after all this!!

Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxoxo

Groceries, Carnival, and Grilled Cheese

So Carnival…or Karneval in Germany originally comes from a Pagan festival originating out of Rome and Greece, however the Christian community adapted this celebration. It’s basically the European version of Mardi Gras for us with a mix of Halloween. Each week is something different but from what I can gather while being here, each town has their own crest and whatever the story is behind the crest is the costume the entire town wears. Men all the same, women all the same. In Tobi’s hometown…he has a chicken costume (with equally strange mask) and the women wear old maid costumes (SCARY faces.) – See Above. These were worn in February right before I arrived, thankfully. Perfect concoction for a series of nightmares.

To see more of each town in the south of Germany – Check out this link. Many costumes are worn throughout the following weeks. So far, in one of the first two days here I was looking out the window of our house and see scray witches walking around (not knowing what the hell was happening!) and feeling VERY frightened suddenly. I started to close all the blinds in the house, lock the doors, and then remembered…oh yeah…crazy Germans! This is COMPLETELY normal!

Along with normal….wait for this fun fact. Last night Tobi and I were talking (aka. Me in my robe with a giant glass of wine in hand) and we hear the doorbell ring. As Harley goes hog wild and attacks the wall trying to get to these people or things, I’m running up the stairs! Customary to Carnival is to wear a costume of your choice (queue: Halloween) but most of the costumes are hand-made and not as skanky as ours in America (boring). So arrived the beekeepers, Queen bee (was a male), and the worker bees. Hilarious! Those who are donned in their get-up go from house to house in costume and invite themselves in for a drink with the home owners. No one can tell you who they are and they talk in strange voices so you can’t detect them. Oh and what I thought was hilarious, we all toasted our drinks and each one of them turned around to lift off their face masks so they could drink without showing us who they were.

In the basket you can see to the left…they had a maxim magazine with a “new cover” telling us that these were their worker bees (aka…nekkid ladies in skimpy underwear) They shared a shot with us of honey schnapps (almost puked!) And invited us to go with them next year in costume. The Queen Bee danced the “bee dance” with me and they were back in flight to the next house.

Since when do people let total strangers with masks on into their house? The Humanity!!

After that adventure we traveled to the grocery store and grabbed a bunch of things. Toblerone showed me the ins and outs so I knew what I was doing but ….

Already colored eggs to purchase? People…don’t be lazy!!! All the fun is in doing it yourself!

So out of all the things I found to eat….I chose to make a grilled cheese. Ha… American! Or as the Germans say… Ami! 🙂