As Bavaria awoke to a giant collective headache this May Day morning (helped by the football results last night as well I imagine!), I enjoyed a leisurely morning’s drive on the empty roads, and took time to slowly cruise past our brand new Maibaum, and admire it in all it’s blue and white stripey glory.
We said goodbye to the old one last year, and this one was ceremoniously put up yesterday lunchtime having been dutifully guarded for quite some time… They take these things very seriously over here, and the front page of our local paper featured a picture of a proud carpenter asleep in a barn next to a newly finished Maibaum in fear of poaching marauders demanding a ransom. I kid you not.
We have yet to see one put up traditionally by a team of strong Bavarian boys wielding sticks and slowly slowly propping the thing up, but it does still happen. Ours was given the honours by an enormous green crane which blocked the road for the duration, not that anyone seemed to mind.
And when the formal stuff was out of the way, it was round the back to the bier tent to let the festivities begin, complete with incredibly smart traditional band, plenty of steckler fish (barbecued mackerel in this instance, plenty of bier (of course), enough tracht to make it feel festive, and lots of joviality… My German is obviously getting a little better because I managed to pretend I was local for all of five minutes, until I had to give in and and admit I was English, but nobody minded, and the “prosts” carried on nevertheless. I like to think that Bavaria appreciates it when its temporary residents join in and make an effort to integrate, and they could definitely teach us a thing or two about community.
And although Small Girl and I decided not to wear our dirndls thanks to the cooler weather, Small Boy insisted upon wearing his lederhosen much to the delight of our elderly neighbour. And later on, his inner Bavarian decided upon a little weight-lifting challenge especially for the occasion (with his Father’s bier glass obviously!)!…