Out of Germany's 16 states (or Länder), I am most thankful my husband's job brought us to the Free State of Bavaria (Freistaat Bayern). Located in Southeast Germany, it is the largest state in the country, and (as far as I know) the most beautiful. Think scenery from the Sound of Music and you'll understand (Austria shares its border).
Bavaria's culture is rife with tradition. Attend any festival and you'll see – and hear and taste and smell, and maybe even touch – in an instant what I mean. Just wait until I publish my Oktoberfest post!
Today while I'm still narrowing down what to include in my Berlin Top Ten list, I thought it'd be fun to bring you DANCE.
In Bavaria, you never know when you're going to run into a performance. The other night when we were enjoying dinner at a nearby monestary restaurant, we heard it before we saw it. Following our ears, we happened upon a small band of brothers performing the Schuhplattler for a private party; they didn't mind our intrusion so we were treated to dinner and a show. Originally a gesture of courtship, Schuhplattler involves men (typically) in a synchronized series of hip, thigh and sole slapping in rhythm to the music.
Goaßlschalzn, Goasslschnoizen or plain old' Bavarian Whipcracking
Tad's employer treated us to a monestary and brewery tour shortly after we arrived last February; I had no idea what to expect, but the entire evening exceeded expectation and introduced me to a culture I would soon learn to deeply appreciated. I was amazed by this groups synchronicity–who knew cracking a whip could be so entertaining?
That same night, just a little fun with the Oompah Band. How can you not love a lot of brass and some good ol' accordian…?
I've already written about the Schäffler (and how lucky I was to see it when it's performed only every seven years!), but no German "dance" post would be complete without it.
And last, but no where near least, this precious gentleman entertained us for quite a while during our local Fall festival; he was having the most fun of them all!
Are you beginning to see why I love this place?
Stay tuned for more adventures :).