In autumn the Germans not only drink beer at Oktoberfest, but also bury a straw dummy with a bottle of schnapps, dance tirelessly at funfair and celebrate the holiday of harvest and church consecration - Kirmes.
Literally Kirche Messe means a church mass, but eventually the holiday moved away from worship format and transformed into some kind of secular festivities. Every year on October 19 in Germany mass funfair is held, two weeks prior to that a straw man is buried into the ground (for not to feel lonely, a straw guy is accompanied with a bottle of schnapps), and in due date they solemnly unearth it, carry through the city, and on the third day return back into the ground - for luck of coming harvest.
In Düsseldorf, Kirmes is celebrated but not in honour of the harvest but to commemorate the day of Saint Apollinaris. In around 1300 AD, Düsseldorf acquired several relics of this martyr who was then declared the patron saint of the city, since then Kirmes is celebrated on grand scale.
In addition to the German variation of Ukrainian Didukh, this day in Germany the King of Marksmen is chosen. Each year during the fair, members of the Verein - the St. Sebastian Marksmen Association - fight for the title competing in shooting accuracy. Target with a dummy bird mounted on a tall building - that's the main task for those who want to get the crown. The youngest marksmen of the Verein aged from 6 to 14 have a chance to get the title of the King of Pages. Previously, according to tradition, the lucky ones who hit the bull's eye gained not only money prize, but also privilege to marry the chosen lady.
But in addition to non-standard entertainment and arrows, funfair visitors will enjoy some familiar things, for instance, decorating holiday tree with ribbons and toys. Without further ado, the Germans named it with simple and straightforward word Kirchweihbaum. It is the point where to they bring a symbol of next crop year a straw man in order to... put it up as a top star!
On the second day of Kirmes traditionally people go to the cemetery to graves their relatives, and on the third day they bury straw man sending it into the ground with head of a rooster, gammon bones and slices of cake. The funeral ceremony is accompanied with presence of a certain women in white who symbolizes death.
In Germany there is even an expression Es ist nicht alle Tage Kirmes. Translated it means Not every day is Mardi Gras or literally Not every day is Kirmes funfair. Perhaps it is really not the best idea to celebrate three days in a row. But once a year one may… no, has to celebrate Kirmes
A mini toast, a slice of cheese and a sip of strong coffee. "That is not a buffet!" a waiter will pronounce indignantly, looking at the disgruntled tourist’s face. The generous Ukrainian soul cannot understand how locals manage to eat their full with that. Therefore, before going to a new country, you need to know exactly whether in the evening you should prepare a couple of sandwiches to indulge them in the morning, whether you need some vegetables, or even some extra litres of water!
The German Embassy in Ukraine traditionally organized an open day in September - the German Garden. Kiev citizens and guests of the city could get acquainted with the activities of Germany in Ukraine and talk with representatives of German intermediary organizations.
OUTLOOK was lucky to visit hospitable Uzbekistan and get better acquainted with crafts of this amazing country. Today we tell you about art of straw work, about materials that craftsmen use and what secrets and unique features of this craft are. Feel the world with us!
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Ice cream with a taste of horse meat, pickled insects, fish with deadly venom, etc – Japanese cuisine has things to surprise, amaze and shock you with. And truth be told, enumeration of these dishes doesn’t help my appetite at all. But we are not after exotic stuff. True culinary tourism is an attempt to comprehend mindset and feel national distinctive color through traditional cuisine – not try most exotic dishes. Parts of people’s souls, its history and culture are actually concentrated in national dainties.
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The Embassy of Uzbekistan in Ukraine and Ambassador's Spouses Club Kiev welcomed the Ukrainian public and foreign guests with the national art of the Uzbek people, traditions and principles of creating pieces of art made by the folk artists and artists from Uzbekistan.
Only dancing and wearing mask, Korean peasants were able to express their disgust towards rudeness or greed of the hosts or apply to some deity with extraordinary request. Keeping anonymity, the people played out the scenes from life, cried, and laughed. At the end of the performance the destiny awarded the good characters and punished villains.
The German city of Wuppertal, according to statistics, is not included even in the top ten most popular tourist destinations in Germany. In addition to the legendary dancer Pina Bausch, the same-name football club and the world-famous film director Tom Tykwer, whose career began in city movie clubs, Wuppertal seems to have nothing to boast about, but as soon as you learn about local transport - the city with its unique suspension monorail, it becomes so coveted for travelers.
Three years ago Austrian tour operatorslaunched an unusual touristic tourdesigned for fansof singing style called yodel. Hikers wander through the Ziller Valley, a broad trail narrows opening the way for only the most avid travellers, then track leads upwards. Tourists look into the interactive station shaped as a giantsonorous walk-in cowbell, then they go around thelargest alpine horn and head to place where Alpine herdsmen used to have unhurried musical conversations with their flocks.
Small ethnic groupshave been always interesting for scientists and artists, who sought inspiration in their lifestyle. The Bajau Sea Gypsies who formally can be correlated with Malaysia, are one of the most popular ethnic groups today.
On Valentine's Day, OUTLOOK shares kissing facts and smooching statistics you never knew, but really should! And icing on the holiday cake will be three star places where few people would resist uttering "Kiss me!"
When you first hear about them, you do not believe your ears; when you first see them, you do not believe your eyes. Their passports have no photos, they do not pay taxes, do not do military service, they wear plain clothing, drive horse-drawn buggies, insulate themselves from modern conveniences, and, of course, have the most delicious food in the USA. Would you like to learn more?
Christmas arrives with a warm overjacket on its shoulders. At night it brings warm light of the first evening star and in the morning it wakes you up with shine of white but warm sun. If my great-grandmonther’s grandmother had been asked about her Christmas feelings, I believe, her words would have been identical to mine. Because together with a bowl of kutia, generations of Ukrainians transfer their traditions from hand to hand.
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A little son came to his father and suggested to run away from mom and granny to the North Pole? Now, do not indulge into tragic speeches of severe frosts, pitch darkness of the polar night and hungry polar bears! Give a conspiracy wink to a little brave one, and give him a real man's job for his school winter holidays that is to learn how to build an igloo, night shelter in ever-frost lands.
Hebron is well known for being the city of 3 [three] religions and 3 [three] civilizations, a real place of power. Perhaps that is why by twist of fate there emerged glass which looks fragile, but is centuries old, the same as Hebron.
Christmas is one of the most beautiful and favourite holidays in Erope and they get ready for it well in advance and thoroughly! Christmas fairs filled with bright fairy lights, New Year toys and shiny tinsels create festive atmosphere of solemnity. Photographer Roman Matkov was lucky to get an eyeful of all this impressive beauty and today he shares pre-holiday mood with readers of OUTLOOK through a selection of photos!
The National Philharmonic of Ukraine with the support of the German Embassy hosted a concert of opera and chamber singer Viktor Rud. The event was held within the framework of the "Week of Germany in Ukraine" from 10 to 26 November in 14 cities of our country.