Christmas Vacation Day 7: Christmas Trees and a Weihnachtsmarkt

It was a day like any other, which started with Brötchen, Maasdamer, and Schwarzwälderschinken. But a normal day it would not be, for this day was meant for Christmas Tree shopping and the Christmas Market!

After a quick breakfast we headed straight for the local nursery with the best Christmas trees, Bösen. On top of the top quality selection, their set-up makes it especially quick and easy to pick the perfect tree. This shining example of German efficiency started with a specially designed cart made specifically for holding trees, then continued with all of the trees unwrapped and leaning against rows of racks much like a clothing store. Once the perfect tree was expeditiously selected it was transported on the cool little cart to be wrapped in netting in 10.5 seconds, then rolled to the next station to have the base trimmed in 7.8 seconds, then through the Kasse* in 5 seconds flat! Okay, maybe the times are a liiiiiittle exaggerated, but it sure felt that fast. After the tree was loaded in the car we were back at the house and had the tree standing in less than 30 minutes (no exaggeration, lol).

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Tree selection (that's )not us

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Tree wrapping (still not us, lol)

Then came the ultimate test of patience, waiting the whole afternoon until it was time to go to the Trier Weihnachtsmarkt. I felt just like Anna from Frozen……

……but eventually the time did arrive and we were off to the epicenter of holiday cheer!

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The Fleichstrasse is just one of many ways leading to the Weihnachtsmarkt

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The first stop for our group of five, and first opportunity to get some Glühwein*, was the ice skating rink in the Kornmarkt where we had agreed to meet the rest of our group. (For those of you not familiar with the Trier Innenstadt*, Kornmarkt is the square where Interbook and the Louisiana are located.)
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After waiting patiently in the usual looooong line we finally received our first cup of glorious hot spiced wine, and I let out a long and audible “aaaaaaahhhhhhhh!” We also had the pleasure of watching the mini Zamboni machine redo the ice rink, which turned out to be one of the highlights of the evening for six year olds. By the time the lesson was completed our group had grown to ten and we set off for the next stop.
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After a brief pause to say hi to a friend of my sister-in-law, we finally arrived at the best part of the Weihnachtsmarkt, the Hauptmarkt.
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The word for word translation for Hauptmarkt is “Main Market”, but that is not the reason it is the best part. No, no, no. The reason the Hauptmarkt is the best part is the one and only thing there that is better than Glühwein…….
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…….Schwenkbraten im Brötchen! This little slice of heaven is as delicious as it is simple, marinated pork steak in a bread roll. That’s it, it’s that simple. But it’s something you simply have to try in order to truly comprehend it’s heavenliness. If you need more than my words to be convinced to try them, you need to look no further than my example. For on this day I ate not one…not two……not three………but four whole Schwenkbraten! The funny part of it all is that when I made my prediction earlier that day for that exact amount everyone thought I was making a joke. Ha, ha, ha, who’s laughing now!

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My crack (a.k.a. Schwenkbraten) dealer

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Once my face was properly and thoroughly stuffed, it was off to the little guy’s favorite part of the Weihnachtsmarkt………
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………the carousel. It’s funny how a spinning machine with fake horses can bring such a huge smile to a kid’s face, and naturally very cute. It is, of course, the anticipation of exactly this cuteness that makes a Daddy weak and brings him to buy tickets for four rides right from the start. Lucky for me the spinning came to an end and my wife’s best friend took over, Daddys do get thirsty after all. Eventually though carousel rides with Godmothers come to an end, Glühwein cups run empty, and it’s time to go home.
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Of course, not all of us actually went home though. Since the Weihnachtsmarkt closes at 9:30, which isn’t even close to late, we contracted a Grandpa babysitter and went to an Italian restaurant to have a beer. What we didn’t know is that the entertainment didn’t end with the carousel rides. We went for a beer, but ended up the audience for a company Christmas party. And not just any ol Christmas party but one complete with a female Santa Claus, choregraphed dancing, women in 80s dresses, and the reincarnation of the old lady from There’s Something About Mary but with better dance moves. Quite a way to have a few beers at the end of the evening, and a superior end to a superb day. Boys zum nächsten mal!

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