At a Restaurant in Germany

Unless it’s a particularly upscale restaurant, you don’t wait to be seated - you just walk in and choose your own table. At bars, cafés, and very informal CROWDED restaurants, it’s okay to sit down next to strangers, as long as you get an affirmative response to “Ist hier noch frei”? (Is this seat vacant?)

Don’t expect any ice cubes in your soda, you need to ask for it. There are NO free refills on drinks. The basket of bread or pretzels on the table sometimes costs extra, so don’t be surprised if you’re charged for what you eat from it. 

Water will not automatically be brought to your table. You have to order it and you will be brought bottled water which you have to pay for. The default water is sparkling. If you do not want that, ask for “stilles Wasser” or “ohne Kohlensäure”. If you want tap water (which is highly unusual in Germany and will get you looks, especially in non-touristy restaurants), you might ask for “Leitungswasser”. Note that it is not customary at all to serve tap water at a restaurant in Germany.

If you cross your knife and fork on your plate, it means you’re just pausing. If you line them up side by side, it means you’re finished, and the waiter may come and take your plate away. Doggie bags are still mostly unknown so your waiter/tress may be surprised if you asked to take leftovers home with you. 

German waiters and waitresses are usually paid more per hour than in some countries (like the USA), so they do NOT rely on large tips. The general rule is to round up the bill to the next larger amount, so if your bill is 22.50 Euros you might give 24 or 25. Your waiter/waitress usually will remain at the table while you pay, so make sure to let them know how much tip you want to leave. For example, if your bill is 15.70 Euros and you want to leave 1.30 Euros as a tip then say “Siebzehn bitte” (Seventeen please) when handing them a 20 Euro note. While credit cards are accepted in most restaurants, it’s more common to pay with cash.

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The “Osterrad” (easter wheel) is a custom practiced in a few regions in northern Germany. For this tradition, hay is stuffed into a large wooden wheel, then lighted and rolled down a hill at nighttime. A long wooden pole pulled through the wheel’s axle helps it keep its balance. If the wheel reaches all the way to the bottom intact, then a good harvest is predicted. The city of Lügde in Weserbergland prides itself as being the "Osterradstadt" (easter wheel city), since it has followed this tradition yearly for over a thousand years.

theheathengentleman  asked:

Hello, All the western world knows the Grimm bothers and their collected tales from the Black Forest, however there must be other collections of German folk tales, can you tell me of any? Thank you.

Have a look here http://oaks.nvg.org/german-tales.html &
here http://fairytalez.com/region/german/ - also see this blog’s folklore tag:
http://willkommen-in-germany.tumblr.com/search/folklore

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The Woolpack Wedding Aesthetic Moodboard

I’ve reconciled with myself that its not going to be a barn wedding. Just imagine them drunk dancing and having a welly drinking ceremony in the Woolpack. Among their family and friends, and the wider village community they will utter their vows of “I know”/ “You Know”, a promise of being husbands always. 

*dedicated to @gemmalou-x- because she is the bestest friend one could ask for, and always pushes me to create when I feel unsure.

Koningsdag

In the Netherlands we have this holiday on 27 april and we call it koningsdag (kingsday). On that day we celebrate the royal family with some tradtions.

This is our royal family

From left to right it is: our king Willem Alexander, our queen Maxima and their kids, Ariane, Amalia and Alexia.

Here are some traditions,

We all dress in orange, because it is our national color and eat a lot of orange colored food.

We have flea markets all across the country.

At those flea marktets we usually also have some traditional games such as koekhappen. The goal of that game is to eat a cookie of a wire above you without using you hands

There is also this game, it is called spijkerbroekhangen. (jean hanging). The goal is to hang as long as possible to the trousers. Sometimes we even place a little pool of dirt underneath the jeans.

I hope you liked this post and as we say in the Netherlands, tot ziens!

Here is a bonus picture of our king throwing a toilet bowl.

The Witchy Lifestyle: Litha

“The Sun is our lord and father: Bright face at the gate of day, comfort of home, cattle, and crop; Lord of the Morning, Lord of the Day. Lifting our hearts, we sing his praise - dance in his healing rays…” ~ “Reel around the Sun,” Riverdance

Here we stand on the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. The sun seems as if it were standing still in the sky, pausing before sliding back down beyond the horizon. This is a time of bonfires, celebration, and feasts. It is a time of banishing harmful spirits and praying for bountiful harvests during the remainder of the year.

Litha is a holiday that hearkens back to ancient Germanic cultures, celebrated today most often by Anglo-Saxon and Germanic re-constructionists and pagans who follow beliefs linked to Germanic practice. It is also a prominent holiday in Christian belief, known as St. John’s Day.

This sabbat would be difficult to trace back to any specific, single point. In part this is due to the fact that midsummer held a significant role to many cultures, and also in part due to the fact that even today, it is celebrated in many different ways. As such, much of what I’ll be describing here tends to be a bit of a generalization. Not every culture engaged in large bonfires, and not every culture even placed nearly so much significance on midsummer (the Celts, for instance, may have acknowledged midsummer, but didn’t celebrate it to the same extent as their four other fire festivals - Samhain, Beltane, Lughnassadh, and Imbolc).

The Wheel of the Year

In the Wiccan story for the wheel of the year, the God as the Oak King is at the height of his virility and power. The Goddess is pregnant, and the Oak King offers his bounties. Though a time of life and celebration, it is also a silent acknowledgement that the Oak King will surrender to the Holly King. After all, now that the year is at the longest the day will get, it will only begin to shorten as the autumn and winter days approach.

Celebrating the Sun

Today, Litha (a name carried over from the Germanic, derived from a text describing months and times of the year - this day being part of “late Litha”) is celebrated by Wiccans and neo-pagans both as an acknowledgement of the turning of the Wheel and also as a way of giving thanks for the bounty brought by the year thus far.

Like Beltane, bonfires are a frequent sight for Litha, symbolizing the power of the sun at its height. Celebrants would wake early so as to construct the fires and watch the rising of the sun, and would keep them burning from sunrise to sunset. In order to cast away negativity and evil spirits, torches built from the bonfires would be carried around the home, representing the light of the sun being cast on all sides of the house. The ashes would be used to bless livestock (much like the Beltane ashes), and the cooled coals and embers would be mixed into the soil of fields so as to bless the crop and encourage strong growth in the months to come.

Feasting is common, as it is on many holidays. Traditionally, dishes with fruits, grains, and honey would be consumed - all goods that are readily accessible during the summer.

Traditionally, oak holds a special role in the pagan aspects of Litha. A tree found throughout the northern hemisphere, it is often respected as a guardian and sometimes even as a spiritual passage into other worlds. Its wood, when burned in a Litha fire, was a potent form of blessing and protection. Aromatic herbs added to the fire would further serve to empower these blessings, and would help add more of that sacred energy to the ashes for the fields and livestock.

Celebrating Today…

In my personal practice, Litha is not that prominent of a sabbat. However, I do occasionally celebrate it, and do so by creating a small fire either in the form of a candle or in the form of a camp/bonfire if celebrating with the coven. I usually give my thanks for the blessings I have received throughout the year, and ask for blessings during the waning light.

If I celebrate with the coven, food is nearly always present. Traditional fare is usually brought to the table, along with wine or whiskey (or if I have it, mead).

This year, contemplate the role the sun has in your life. What kinds of blessings have you received this season, and how might you give thanks for them? And what do you hope to accomplish as the light wanes?

Have a Blessed Litha! )O(

Habibti, 
he says when I am honey.
And leaves me hungry
for spices. He leaves 
me angry and in love. 
I love you. I 
say it so desperately
and it does not calm me.
And he does not always
say it back.
I guess it’s too
European for him to
say: I love you too.  

Albi, 
he says when I am alone 
in the kitchen, crying softly,
before I cut a pomegranate.
I tell him I miss him
and he does not
cause the lust might 
devour me tonight.
He only misses me 
when another man’s
hand is on my thigh 
for my body is his 
property. 

Hayati, 
he says when he 
has spoken to his mother
about my Henna tattoos.
But he has not said
anything to my 
father about the white sheets.
I say marriage.
He says Insha'Allah.

—  Arabic Is The New French from The Immigration Series by Royla Asghar