Birmingham: Frankfurt German Christmas Market

I really wanted to go to Pasar Seni ITB 2014 (Art Market held by my friends’ university, Bandung Institute of Technology) this Sunday. It happens every four years, and my friends this year are participating in the committee. Ami, my middle school friend, even told me, “I haven’t slept for three days, and I haven’t come home for the past one week. I even brought a sleeping bag to campus.”

So, you can imagine how much I wanna be there, right? And I had a rough week, as you can see from previous post, haha. Gawat, lama-lama ketahuan state of mind-ku berdasarkan tulisanku, haha.

I decided to go to Birmingham, to one of the biggest Christmas Market in the world, outside Germany of course (because that’s where the Christmas Market tradition comes from).

Toys! Nutcrackers! Haribo! Wine! Bratwurst! Schokolade! 

I felt like I entered a time machine (or pintu ke mana sajanya Doraemon), and went back to Germany.

Although it took me about three hours by train from Cambridge (and another three-hour train ride to go back), and the ticket was still expensive after the railcard discount, it was definitely worth it.

Merry-go-round Christmas edition.
Beautiful decoration.
And Ferris wheel, as well. At the back, there is also an outdoor ice skating rink. I’m wondering why they’re having it, because it must be really hard to maintain. Especially, since the weather is still above 10 degrees Celsius.
Frankfurt German Christmas Market. You can also see what kind of beer/ wine they have.
People drinking mulled wine, hot chocolate, or earting bratwurst/ potatoes.
The atmosphere of the market in the morning. See, how colorful it is?
My favorite: Lebkuchen (Love Cookie?). It says, “Ich liebe dich,” or “Herzlichen Gluckwunsch.” This time, they have some statements in English, like, “I love you.” I wanted to try one (since past summer), but don’t think can finish one by myself. Maybe I should find someone to buy the cookie, and share it with me, haha.
Birmingham City Library. This is really pretty, isn’t it?
There were so many things there: from arts and crafts, toys, to different types of foods which remind me of Germany. There were even some wafers from Edeka (a supermarket chain in Germany)! It was sold for 5 Pounds, though; last summer, I got it for only about 1 Euro. So expensive.
The beer/ wine glasses can be brought home, just like in a typical beer festival in Germany. I really want to get the glass, because it’s a good souvenir. But, should I just throw away the beer/ wine? Nope. Not a good idea. 
I got Kartoffeln und Champignon, (potatoes and mushrooms) with garlic sauce, which was pretty good. There were also some chocolate-covered-marshmallows, and even chocolate fountain for fondue. There were also some halal foods. Yup, one thing that I noticed when I walked around Birmingham, there were so many Muslim women who wore hijab!
I think, one thing that I haven’t seen before was tool-shaped chocolates, such as wrench, scissors, or hammer. I am wondering where this idea came from.
Another weird food that they sold there: Jack Daniel’s onion with ostrich burger. Or Baileys hot chocolate. I can never imagine how these taste like.
There were also so many cool things which you can buy as Christmas presents. Like leather gloves, or Christmas lights, but with little angels in each of the little lamp. Or maybe a sketch of Birmingham landscapes, or aromatic incense sticks.
When my friends who study in Germany tell me about how cool a Christmas Market is, I think, I can understand it now. Maybe next time, I will visit the real German Christmas Market in Germany. Also other interesting cultural things around Europe. Or around the world. I hope I will have a chance to do so, because it is just amazing to see how different or similar human beings are around the world. Don’t you think so?

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