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Friday, November 5, 2010

The first 5 days of November

Some days ago we welcomed November, as you did as well certainly ... wherever you are in the world.

So what did you do? Did you celebrate? Did you party? Did you grieve for somebody? Have you been scared? Did you fire rockets?

Now, depending on where you live, it might have been a different outcome.

In Vienna we started off with the newly celebrated habit of Halloween. Trick'n'treat has found it's way to our capital. But apart from small children, who have mistaken this tradition with Fasching, the "Viennese way of Carneval", nobody really favours to dress up spooky.

Shops love it, as they can do a proper decoration and pumpkin sellers are able to sell the biggest pumkins nowadays. In the Kindergarden traditional pumpkin candle making is a nice crafts adventure.

Although the Celts did pass through Vienna, their celtic Samhain tradition did not make it into the hearts of Austrian people.

And you will find no creativity with bloody and half-alive costumed people, no corpse-like dressed ladies and no Draculas will be found en masse. No haunted acitivites, no ghost appearances in the old palaces or manor houses.
In London this evening is one more time a great occasion for party and drinking time and of course THE evening for all ghosts - and believe me, they are there, in England!

So on a 31st of October don't expect anything special in Vienna - apart from our cultural evening scene!

The 1st of November is The All Hallow's Day or All Saints Day which has been adopted by the catholic church to be THE day for remembering their many holy people. And this day is not only a public holiday in Vienna, but tradition has it, that people use this day and the following one to visit all their once-beloved ones, the ones beneath the surface!

So expect huge traffic congestions all around the cementaries and graveyards. It also will be difficult to find anything else in a flower shop than wreaths.
And logically there are no bonfire nights like in London, where on the 5th of November, Guy Fawkes, the first British terrorist, is remembererd with lots of fireworks around this day. Maybe you can recall it: that was the guy who wanted to blow op the british parliament ... in 1605. By the way .... some linguists think that the word "guy" derives from Guy Fakes!

Remember, remember the fifth of November,
Gunpowder treason and plot.
We see no reason
Why gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot!

Sorry, Vienna cannot offer such tradition, but believe me, November is a wonderful month in Vienna: traditional Martinmas Goose, Opening of Carneval Season and Opening of Christmas Markets all well mixed with yellowish falling leaves
Read more in my upcoming post!

Hurry up - November is almost sold out at bluedanube apartments! few nights left!

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