Whenever we go to a Weinachtsmarkt, Goddess and I try to look for the unique.

Every market is filled with shops.  Many of them are the same, from market to market to market.  The same suppliers, often the same people.  Selling the same-ol’, same-ol’.

But not always.

In Vienna it was a wonderful handmade, hand-painted globe.  “Made by a young local artist”, said the booth worker, who was completely set aback when I replied “I only purchase work from old, foreign artists”.  Then we had a good laugh as I forked over the Euro.

In Speyer, it was the same-ol’.

In Bad Wimpfen it was a hand-crafted glass hummingbird.

And while waiting for the shop owner to wrap our purchase, this guy kept catching my eye.

Tonight we’ll explore the Heidelberg weinachtsmarkt.  Crazy packed during the weekend, we made a glancing blow last Thursday and decided that we’d visit again on a weeknight.

When there’s still room to move.

I’m sure I’ll make a picture or two there.

Corner Honey Table

There’s always a chance to make a buck.

Or in this case a euro.

Even if it’s only 24°F (-4°C).

Because someone will stop and look.  Perhaps buy.

Bad Wimpfen, Germany.  Off the beaten track, around the corner from the oldest Weinachtsmarkt in Germany (seit 1487).

I absolutely love that vine along the building.  I’m glad I saw it in winter, instead of during the summer when the leaves cover the entire house.

Weinachtsmarkt Overview

I’ve been doing a lot of writing about Weinachtsmarkts.

And showing a lot of details from those markets.  But if you haven’t been to one, those details don’t really give you a feel for the market.

So here’s  an overview of one, the Bad Wimpfen Weinachtsmarkt, the oldest Christmas Market in Germany (seit [since] 1487).  And that’s the Blauer Turm (Blue Tower) in the background, dating back from the 13th Century

All of those booths are selling something – ornaments, glüwein, or smoked horse meat (which is amazing, BTW).

The best part is seeing the continuation of history.  History that stretches back further than the discovery of North America by Europeans.

Wintertime Gloom

Winter hasn’t even started and folks are already complaining, whether it be too cold, too dark (we get only 8 hours between sunrise and sunset here right now), or too depressing.

Honestly, it’s a viewpoint I have never understood. You can’t control it, so it’s better to adapt to it.

But that doesn’t mean that I can’t try to understand.

Goddess and I enjoyed a Weinachtsmarkt today.  A wonderful classic German town called Bad Wimpfen, with history going back to the Neolithic times, although it’s been settled since the first century AD (yeah, I know about BCE.  Get over it).

The temperature was hovering just above freezing, which is perfectly fine.  That’s what they make clothes for.  But just as we had completed the rounds of the entire market, we felt the first raindrops.  Which increased in intensity.

So that’s the one weather situation that I will agree is the worst – just above freezing and raining.  Because once you get wet in that situation, it’s pert near impossible to warm up.  Luckily we were done, so we didn’t have to think hard about heading to the car.

On the way back to the car, we stopped in a small park which happened to be the old cemetery.  The park overlooked the Neckar River and the river valley below.  It would be a beautiful view, except it’s dominated by a very large industrial complex, complete with large steam stack.

With the snow on the ground, the rain falling, the bare trees and the factory in the background, I began to see.  I may not agree, but I saw.

And understood.

And had to capture the mood with my camera.

Exactly as visualized.

Five second exposure, hand held.