New Year in Germany - Anything good on TV?

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Frankfurt am Main, Germany

New Year in Germany - Anything good on TV? Frankfurt am Main Reviews

dougal dougal
70 reviews
Dec 31, 2006
When planning on celebrating New Year in Germany here are a few things you should know:

a) Germany is shut: This may sound odd but when I was there in 2006 virtually every shop, restaurant, bar, café and attraction shut down for two days on the 31st Dec and 1st Jan. This may have been influenced by New Years Eve being on a Sunday this year but even so, it did seem a bit weird. Obviously if you look hard enough there were a few of the big, trendy bars open in the centre of Frankfurt and the odd restaurant here and there but that was about it. Compare that to England where even the smallest bar is thronging until the early hours taking in more money over the bar in one night than they probably do in the whole of January. You’re missing a business opportunity there Germany...

b) Dinner for One: Instead of going out on New Years Eve it seems that everyone in Germany has house parties and sits around watching a bizarre music hall sketch called 'Der 90 Geburtstag' or 'Dinner for One'. This comprises of a black and white film about an old woman who celebrates her ninetieth birthday with her seemingly even older butler. As Miss Sophie's four best friends are now long since dead the butler is forced to drink all their drinks and make their toasts through each course of the meal. He gradually gets drunk and stumbles about doing comedy trips over a stuffed tigers head carpet.

And that's it. It's about 20 minutes long, in black and white and in the original English.

And the Germans apparently love it. It's on every year on virtual constant rotation on New Years Eve and people get together to have parties where they watch it, laugh hysterically and drink the same drinks along with the actors as it goes through. (I know this as I saw a documentary about it prior to one of it’s showings.)

"Same procedure as last year Miss Sophie?"

"Same procedure as every year please"

c) Fireworks: The traditional way to celebrate New Year is to let off fireworks at midnight. Unlike the UK however this isn't a case of an organised display or you and your mates letting a few off in your garden. No - this involves everyone congregating in certain part of the town e.g. in the town square, on the river bank etc) with their own box of fireworks and setting them off together. And there doesn't seem to be any idea of the firework code - no keeping them in biscuit tins, lighting them at arms length and retiring to a safe distance for these fellas. Oh no. Everyone simply lugs them around in rucksacks and plastic bags and just sets them off in the crowd. Firing rockets parallel to the ground and chucking lit fireworks over peoples heads seems a particular favourite. The Green Cross Code man would have a fit - I know he was crossing roads but I'm sure he'd take a dim view of this type of firework malarkey as well...
Dinner for One - Same procedure as…
sunsetrosebud says:
I just watched Dinner for One. It did make me laugh but not sure that it would be worth staying home on New Year's Eve for.
Posted on: Apr 29, 2007
Zen says:
Actually, we do know about fireworks safety and rules, it's just that a lot of people choose to ignore it... no comment! But you don't have to go to the same place everyone is setting them off and risk being blown up. You can just go to the street corner and be sure to meet lots of others there who will wish you a Happy New Year even though you've never seen them before. That's what I think is the nicest thing about New Year's in Germany: on that day, for one hour, it's really easy to get to know Germans! :D
Posted on: Jan 31, 2007
dougal says:
'It's a Wonderful Life' - One of the best films ever made.

'Dinner for One' - a bizarre music hall farce with a bloke doing pratfalls.

As for fireworks - there is a special type of police force in Germany who can pull you up for crossing the road in the wrong place or washing your car on a Sunday (the ordernungsamt sp?). it's all about following the rules so you'd think it would extend to fireworks but it seems not!!
Posted on: Jan 06, 2007
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