Fake Irish on a hill...

Last Saturday was "Jani" (Midsummer Fest), and while the suggested (and prepared for...) meeting up and co-celebrating it with the others here (who are, decidedly, definitely NOT Latvian :p ) fell through (more healthy vegetables and fruits for me, suckers), I was able to attend an Irish festival/concert thing not far from Landau. Tutoring family's mother invited me, and after a quick stop to see the last of the Germany-Sweden game, we headed off to Madenburg. I didn't understand at first, but Madenburg isn't a city in itself, but is a Burg (mini-castle? it's not really big enough to be a full-blown castle) above Eschbach.

Eschbach is a little crazy historical city, built in the mid 1200's and has a population of around 700. Not a lot of time to look at the city, though. After parking the car halfway up the mountain it took a 15 minute hike to get to Madenburg. The most amazing part of the entire thing was that this is a historical place, it's ancient (1100's), and they host events here once or twice a year. There are no guard rails, the steps, which are original, stone and very worn down, have no handrails. It's a touristy deathtrap, if you compare it to what they do with historical stuff in the U.S. I loved it :) The view from Madenburg is also spectacular. You can see where Landau is, and the beginning of Karlsruhe. Everything looks so close together from way up high, like the next city is just a few steps away.

The band, Skye, was made up of three fake Irish Germans. Which means that they sounded pretty Irish. I recognized maybe three out of all of the songs they played. Unfortunately they were kind of pushed into a corner of the Burg, so the sound didn't carry too well. There was food, drink, and a lot of people. A lot a lot. According to Tutoring mother, there have never been that many people at the fest. There was also a nice bonfire, so I even though I spent my Latvian holiday with a bunch of Germans, they had the right elements, and I was alright with all of it.

The thing started around 7 and we left around 11.30, stopped by Tutoring families house (with the other 3 people who went with us), interrupted the boys' night of pizza and TV, and had tiramisu and espresso. By the time I was dropped off it was around 12.30, so I hunkered down with my homemade cheese and some of the veggies and beer I had bought, and amused myself with latvian music and whatever I had in my room (computer, books... that's about it) until 4 A.M., by which point I was so incredibly bored that there was nothing else to do BUT go to sleep. I missed sunrise by an hour or so, but it's the best I've done in years.

All views from within Madenburg, except for this last one, which is a shot of what the world beneath Madenburg looks like. The city in the very back center on the horizon is Landau.

Madenburg bonfire

My cheese!

A lonely celebration!

**Note: if you're interested in how the WM scene is in Germany, read Andi's blog, because her boyfriend is crazy into WM, and has sucked her into the system. Link on the right!