Today Sabine asked me why we say "season's greetings." You must understand that here they only have Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. What is it that we have at home? Football season, Baseball season, Basketball season, and the off-season? And then there's the holiday season. Starting sometime around Halloween and lasting until the advertisements for credit card holiday debt reduction ads finally go off the air around February. So in our twelve month year we have five seasons, four of which last three months with the fifth lasting almost five months.
This weekend marks the beginning of the Weihnachten Markt (Christmas market) here in Oldenburg. Apparently it's not just a weekend thing: the booths stay up and open throughout the week. The seasonal delectables are also appearing in full force. There are roasted almonds, hot spiced wine, gingerbread by the loaf, cookies, and of course the mandatory chocolate Santas. Hot chocolate, tea, and coffee are, if possible, even more present in my daily routine. Oh, and the biggest thing is that yesterday it snowed here. That's right: snowed. Granted, it didn't stick because the thermometer was barely tickling the zero mark, but I witnessed with my own eyes flakes coming down from the sky. It has been a very long time since I have seen snow in November, and I only hope this means that there will be a fair amount of snow, because the stuff just delights me. As long as I am not attempting to drive over it on my way through a mountain pass, or spend the night on the street, snow is a-okay with me. So here comes Christmas whether I am prepared or not (so far, I am not even remotely), and with it all the joys and headaches of the peak of the fifth season.