Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Dec 31, 2009 Sylvester

Dec 31, 2009 (All) The last day of 2009 and we are curious as to the new year's celebration in Germany. Throughout the week, we have met various people, from relatives, friends (Dieter's from 1983-4), neighbours, people on the street and in various shops - each wishing us a "gute rutsch im Neues Jahr" (a good slide/slip into the new year). Following breakfast, we venture out for a 3 km walk into the fields (which have paved streets for walking, biking and horse riding). However, the recently plowed fields and the rain created layers of mud on the walkways). We encounter molehills that resemble green pastures of 'acne', a waterfall in the middle of a field, and a tunnel under the train tracks. A fog engulfed the small village of Igstat. Alexander found a large snail shell and Dad discovers a "marzipan potatoe" bush and we enjoy the tastes (he should become a marzipan magician).We arrive back to a wonderful aroma of Kartofel puffer mit Apfelmous (finely shredded potatoes mixed with egg and cornstarch, fried in sunflower oil and served with applesauce) - Lecker! After lunch, Dieter enjoys a short nap and we begin the final preparations for the evening Sylvester celebrations. The table is set with raclette (swiss cheese oven) and various cut meats (sirloin, salami), vegetables, krauter butter and cooked potatoes. We accompany Tante Karin to church for the new year's service and are challenged by the pastor to think of how we can trust God in the new year, regardless of the circumstances that we may face. We walk home and enjoy the traditional video of "Dinner for One" (see http://video.google.de/videoplay?docid=9105942950207814319&ei=pas_S-emD53e2wLTtPXYAQ&q=dinner+for+one&hl=de&client=firefox-a#) and laugh ourselves silly: "The same procedure, James?". The children prepare balloons with feet and various facial stickers. The neighbours come over at 1900 and we begin the raclette feast. Slow delicious meal with many stories and laughter. The children entertain us with balloon bungie jumping. As we near the magic hour, the TV helps in the countdown of the old year and the beginning of the new. Following the countdown, we 'Prost' the new year with sekt, run outside to wish neighbours a blessed new year and enjoy the surround sound and visuals of fireworks. Back inside we enjoy the various music video hits (German) from the past 30 years, dancing to various familiar tunes. Then at 0230 we fall asleep as the new year dreams begin.

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