Ribbons of light stream,
Mix with screams, light the town, and
Mark the festival.

This week in Darmstadt is Heinerfest. AFAIK, "Heiner" is a title that the Darmstadters have chosen for themselves, though I can't honestly say I think it's particularly flattering. :-/ Anyway, it's a festival!

After Jugger ended on Thursday, Mathieu and I headed out with a few Germans (and a Russian) from same. It was sort of absurdly expensive (bumper cars - €1, drop tower - €3,50, ferris wheel €4), but still a lot of fun.

It was also pretty different from American festivals. I guess my only experience has been with those of the 4-H variety (for the record, I had no idea what the 4 Hs were until I read that page... "Head, Heart, Hands, and Health."), which include projects by kids aged 6 to 18 or so. I did 4-H one year: cake decorating! It was, um, okay. Not particularly rewarding, but I suppose it might have built my character a bit, or something like that. Anyway, there were no quilts to judge or farm animals to pet at this fair: since the drinking age in Germany is just 16, there was just a lot of beer. :( No goats! No bunnies! Sad day! Oh, but the same expensive fair food that's at home seems to be a staple at fairs everywhere.

Edit (after a question by Adam): German fairs don't seem to have carnies in the same way that American ones do. Those who were hawking the games seemed less than enthusiastic to perform such duty, and those running the rides didn't strike me as creepy at all. Well, they could have been, I suppose, but I'd've never known, since I don't really understand German. :) And the addition of techno as the soundtrack for every single ride was also a bit of a change.

Fun was had. How could it not be? It's a festival!


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