Waruno Mahdi

Photos I took at some Christmas fairs in Berlin
November – December   2010

Mid November 2010 there were official statements that plans of terrorist bomb attacks in public places had become known. Public buildings were guarded by police and other security units, public access to the parliament building and some other sites was strictly limited. The public was called upon to be vigilant for suspicious-looking unattended packages, etc. The Berliners remained calm, and continued to go about their daily business as usual.
     This seemed to me just the right moment to demonstrate my own contempt for those terrorist nittwits. And so I visited some of the Christmas fairs that are traditionally run throughout Berlin over the four last weekends before Christmas. While doing so I also made some pictures to give you an idea of these traditional fairs, and to show how they continued to be crowded inspite of the bomb threats.

The Christmas fair  on Alexanderplatz
Saturday, November 27
Inspite of the cold and grey weather, there were lots of people. There was no snow yet, as you will see if you click on the pictures
There were, amongst others, stalls offering a wide variety of traditional sugary sweet treats and cookies from all parts of the country, for example "Früchtebrot" (fruit bread) and "Lebkuchen"—the latter a specifically German kind of "gingerbread" strongly spiced with cinnamon, cloves, and anisseed, and with honey as sweetener—from Nurnberg (above left) and sugary "snowballs" from Rothenburg (above right).
The Christmas fair  on Breitscheidplatz
Saturday, November 27
The fair at the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church was just as crowded with visitors.
One speciality which I only found at this fair, and that in more than one stall, was half-a-meter-long fried sausages.
Another particularity were Asian stalls selling Turkish kebab (on the left), 0r Far Eastern noodles and sushi (on the right).
The Christmas fair  before the Red City Hall (Rotes Rathaus)
Sunday, November 28
The red building with clock tower in the background of the middle picture is the Red City Hall (Rotes Rathaus). The left picture gives a partial view of Berlin’s St. Mary’s Church (St. Marienkirche). The green-copper dome in the distant background at the right is the Berlin Cathedral (Berliner Dom).

On the right: 
The fair was quite crowded. Not only did one have to queue to get a ride on the Ferris wheel, there were several people skating on the circular ice rink surrounding the Neptune statue. 
     In the righthand background one has yet another glimpse of the dome of the Berlin Cathedral.
The “exotic” products offered at this fair were in part from even further: these two stalls sold articles of Peruvian handicraft. The stall in left, above, sold products of alpaca fleece, while that on the right offered souvenirs of Russian handicraft.
     But there was of course no less supply of products from numerous places inside the country: 
Above, from left to right:
  • Original Dresden "Handbrot, a bread with bacon, cheese, and vegetables filling, baked in a wood-stove.
  • Nurnberg "Früchtebrot" (fruit bread) and "Lebkuchen"  (see above).
  • Christmas-tree decorations from Thuringen.  

    On the right: decorative candles moulded by hand.
Once more at the Christmas fair  on Alexanderplatz a week later,
Sunday, December 5;
There had now been unusually early and plentiful snow by then.
Apparently because of the unexpecrted snow, there were less people around, although the snow sweepers were doing their best to clear the paths. I took some pictures of objects I had not photographed the week before. Here a stall with exotic, mainly buddhist, art objects. Here you could treat yourself to fried champignons, goulash, chicken liver with fried potatoes, curry saussage (a Berlin speciality), curly kale with saussages, a.o.

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