The Christmas season in Germany is no time to stay indoors, bundle up in your winter coat, hat and gloves and experience the Markets with us!
I can only try to write about our recent experience at the Christmas Markets in Germany if you promise to use all your senses as you read along. The towns we visited were magical, out of a Disney movie - Frankfurt, Wiesbaden, Idsteiner, and Konigstein. Our gracious hosts and guides for the weekend were our friends Ray and Maria and Angela and Eric and all their incredibly talented and tolerant children. Our travel companions were our special "Canadian" friends Karen and John who kept us entertained with stories and magic!
The eyes of excited, cherry-cheeked children, bundled in winter clothing light up at the sight of the treasures they see...toys, Christmas tree ornaments and candy piled high in the rows of wooden stands hung with evergreen boughs and lights. Little Gracie could not wait to ride on the merry-go-round and train while looking out for St. Nicholas. The all-American teenagers with us head straight to Starbucks for frozen coffee treats! In addition to the Nutcrackers I am always searching for, many other handmade crafts and toys are for sale. Traditional wool clothing, handmade jewelery, beeswax candles, wooden angels, handpainted glass ornaments....even wooden kitchen spoons!
The cold air smells of Gluhwein, delicious hot mulled wine from mugs inscribed with the city and the year and a motif of the city. Add to that the distinct smell of Lebkuchen -gingerbread cookies, licorice or anise, hot apple cider, roasted chestnuts, sugared almonds, crepes with Nutella and bananas, potato pancakes and sausages cooked on open grills. Can you smell it yet?
Frohliche Weihnachten! Merry Christmas!