Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Einladung zum Kinderfasching

Fasching - also known as Fat Tuesday, is a pretty big deal here. It's probably a combination of being in Bavaria, a heavily Catholic state, and the lack of Halloween as children, that cause costumed adults to fill the streets and celebrate with one last hurrah before the reflection and fasting that come with Lent. I went to the celebration (sans costume) last year at Marienplatz. My favorite costume award went to a group of flight attendants and pilots. They had these turquoise and magenta getups and drink carts with plenty of prosecco flowing. It's nice to see people don't take themselves so seriously. I kind of view it as Halloween, Fat Tuesday, and April Fools Day rolled into one.

This is a photo of the aftermath... people sell bags of confetti all around Marienplatz and there is traditional dancing at Viktualienmarkt. It is fun to see small children dressed up or sitting on their parents shoulders tossing confetti.

And the next day, Ash Wednesday, the mayor of the city dips the city purse into the Fischbrunnen (fish fountain), which local lore says washing your purses in this fountain on Ash Wednesday keeps it from ever going empty. I dipped my hand and rubbed it on my leather bag... so far, so good!

We have been invited to a Fasching party on Feb. 2nd at our friend Constanze's apartment. The theme is 'kinderfasching' meaning to dress in costumes that children would wear. I'm not really one to dress up, so this may require some creativity. To me wearing my dirndl is wearing a costume, but here it would be considered formal wear. We've not done too much with Fasching, but I love the mischievous nature of it - sometimes people make cupcakes and fill several with mustard. I may have to do that myself.

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