Opening day is always the Tuesday before the first Advent Sunday, and this year was no exception. My Mum and I love the Christmas market and wanted to go as soon as possible, so our first visit was just in time for the Mayor's opening speech.
He didn't test the audience's patience too much; I think he only spoke for little more than 10 minutes. Of course he reminded us of all those people who have recently come to Ludwigsburg as refugees, and no doubt will keep coming, and how we should not forget about them in all our festive joy.
A girls' choir sang after the Mayor finished his speech, and after one or two songs, a group of people dressed up as King Friedrich I. of Wuerttemberg and his wife Charlotte (an English princess, by the way; daughter of King George III) took the stage, as well as their guards and some other characters from back when there were regular audiences held at the Royal court for the citizens of Ludwigsburg.
The real Friedrich:
This life-size painting is in Ludwigsburg's palace, in the big throne room (there are also two smaller throne rooms, for more intimate audiences). Friedrich was 2,11 m (6'11'') tall (really!) and weighed around 200 kg (31,5 st), and his portrait measures exactly 2,11 m, too.
They re-enacted a short scene where two or three citizens came before the King to put in a request, and how the King (assisted by his wife) decided. The first one was a woman who had found a baby and wanted to know what to do with the little one. At first, the King ordered to have the baby sent to the town's orphanage. But the woman begged to be allowed to keep the child, and after the King's wife whispered something in his ear, he agreed to let the baby stay with the woman and give her the money that would have been spent for its upkeep at the orphanage.
The girls' choir sung once more, and then the opening ceremony was over, and we could go and have our first favourite food and drink which we always have at the Christmas market.
Here are some more impressions - sorry about the quality, but that is the best my camera can do at night:
|Someone has put a Santa's hat on the raised hand of Ludwigsburg's founder, Duke Eberhard Ludwig|
During the first week after its opening, I've already been 4 times to the market, usually to eat, but i've also bought a few things that will go into my Christmas parcel to my Yorkshire family.