The 25. and 26. of December, days that in my house in the US are marked with elaborate food, loud songs and overall indulgence, are more like days of rest. I spent Christmas Day eating brunch with my next host family, and the 26. relaxing with my family. The atmosphere was very different than my previous Christmas experiences, but equally lovely. I found it hard to believe that I was really celebrating Christmas in Germany, something I had dreamed of on hot July days in the States.
A week later, Silvester is celebrated to usher in the New Year. Several days before, my host dad and brother and I had purchased fireworks, which are only legal in Germany on 31. December. My family's tradition is Fleischfondue, and incredibly delicious type of 'fondue' where meat is cooked in a communal pot and then eaten with various sauces. We whiled away the time until midnight playing board games and cards, and then shortly before 12 we set up our fireworks on the sidewalk. Standing together in the street with my family, we watched the sky explode with fireworks from all over the neighborhood.2012 was a great year for me, full of experiences and moments to remember. I am so pleased and grateful to be starting off 2013 in Germany, and I can't wait to see what the new year brings for my exchange.
|Christmas Day dinner: duck, red cabbage, dumplings, spätzle|
|Sparklers on Silvester|
|Fireworks over the town|