Monday, February 19, 2007

Karneval (Monday)

So I won the fight against my intrinsic laziness and made the trek to Cologne. Here are some pictures; I'm a little short on text, but maybe I'll add more later.

Leaving the train station, I saw a bunch of bumblebees. You can't tell but they've stopped for a beer and a smoke.

I was worried about finding the parade route, but it turns out the parade route seems to snake all around the old city. We crossed the route twice just to get to this spot.

A float.

Some sort of bubble blowing dragon?

My favorite, the chicken people.

At our spot, the crowd wasn't overly drunken (although there was plenty of beer) and there were significant numbers of kids (and the paraders made a particular effort to give candy to them). It also didn't seem to be particularly German (many Chinese faces and I heard plenty of English), but certainly German enough to yell the appropriate cheers and sustain singing along with the music.

These people have a good spot on the roof of a nearby building.

The floats throw out candy and flowers and sometimes toys to the crowd. Women tend to get a flower along with a kiss.

The nurses on the float are men, I think.

And what exactly is going on in this float?

The floats seem to satirize politics and current events. Also, I saw one float which I won't describe, but the point of which can be summarized by 'Köln rules, Dusselfdorf drools.'

We called it quits after nearly three hours, although the parade was still going strong. Closer to the Cathedral, there were a lot more people in the windows of the buildings and barricades to prevent us from crossing, making it a long, confusing trek to find our way back to the train station.

The groups sometimes throw candy with the name of their organization (and their president's name).


gledwood said...

Bumblebees... thanxx to global warming we get these all year round now in London. I saw one on New Year's Day buzzing outside our local florist's... Anyway, there are some nice fotos on your blog. I do a blog too. It is quite different to yours. I'm at You're most welcome to drop by.
All the Best

Anonymous said...

dude, we need more people dressed up as bumblebees, chickens, pigs, etc. in chicago. who knew that germans got all the fun?!