After writing in my previous post about how I was going through a series of "first of last" things happening this year, today I can happily report a true first for this year: The first stroll across our beautiful Christmas Market!
You have been seeing pictures of the market on my blog year after year; sometimes they were better than this year (I apologise for the blurry ones which I took with my mobile without really pausing for them, or while being in the middle of a crowd). Some were taken by my sister who patiently waited along with me for our first Holzofen-Dinnede (our favourite Christmas Market food) of the year.
The market opened last night with the usual ceremony: A musical introduction - this time like last year a set of Advent and Christmas songs/hymns/carols, very beautifully sung by an all-male choir from Stuttgart, followed by a short speech from Ludwigsburg's principal Mayor (we have several "minor" mayors, but this one is the most important head of town) and then a quick performance by a group of people dressed up as King Friedrich, his wife Charlotte-Mathilde, a handful of courtiers and some soldiers or guards. The King was played by a different man this year, an actor with a very good speaking voice. In former years, the King never said anything, simply waved gracefully to his subjects, but this year he addressed the people of Ludwigsburg, the merchants coming from far and wide to sell their goods at the market and all the visitors.
Also, the Mayor is new - we only elected him this summer, and he took up his position in September. He is much younger than his predecessor and - unlike him - comes from our town. The speech was unremarkable in that it went along without a hitch (in contrast, the former Mayor involuntarily performed a small stand-up comedy on stage last year).
We enjoyed it all - the lights, the food (and drink), the choir and having a quick look at some of the stalls. I only bought two packs of Christmas cards and will certainly return for a more thorough browse.