Bonn. A group of American students was experiencing their first ever German carnival. They loved it. And wished they could have something like this back home in Texas, too.
Harrison Emery rolls his eyes. „My brother is in Germany on holidays, and he went sightseeing in Berlin - during carnival. Surely, there is nothing going on, there“, he said. „I urged him to come to the Rhineland before Ash Wednesday.“ His friends agree. None of them is a Rhinelander - and yet are completely carnival-mad.
The group of young US people is studying in Bonn currently - most of them medicine or engineering. This season marks their first ever carnival experience. „It is simply fantastic. I wish so much to have something like this back home in Texas“, says Alexa Mendoza. The others nod. Mendoza is living in Bonn for a bit longer than the others but could not party last year due to a broken leg. Which means: It’s a premiere for her too this year. They are all watching the parade on the corner of Alexanderstraße/Breite Straße. On Sunday, Mendoza and Emery already took part in the Liküra parade at the Schäl Sick.
Some of their friends went to Cologne for the day, but most are partying in Bonn. There is only one person who does not like carnival at all. „But he is the only one“, says Mendoza and smiles.
That they know what carnival is all about is proven by their costumes. If hippie or bear - you can’t tell the difference from the established „Jecken“ at all. „I also have a bee costume - I think you need two outfits at least“, says Mendoza.
Only the songs have not become second nature yet, which might be due to the language barrier. Most of them are not in Germany long. Thank Goodness for hits like „Viva Colonia“. „We can all sing along to that one“, says Emery. They are swaying along to the music with the other tunes. Looking pretty true to the original again.
(Original text: Max Müller / Translation: Mareike Graepel)