Happy Halloween!

While listening to North German radio station NDR2, I discovered that Germans are now celebrating Halloween. In listening to random snipits of the NDR braodcast, I discover that Germans say "sweet or sour" as opposed to "trick or treat". I'm not entirely clear if the German phrase means "if you don't give me something sweet I'll become sour (angry)", if you don't give me something sweet, I'll make you sour (again, angry)", or whether people may give sweets or sour things away. I'm sure the latter would make dentists happier. To make things even more confusing, I find out that there is a movement to designate October 31st, Martin Luther day, the day that he nailed his 95 theses to the Wittenberg door.

In thinking about trick or treating in this coutry, I am often reminded that when I was 3 years old, and did not speak English yet, I refused an apple handed out by a kindly neighbor women. I told her in German that I only accepted sweets. "Ich nehme bloss Bonbons."

2 Responses to “Happy Halloween!”

  1. Well it is my opinion that Sweet or Sour would be the kind of candy that Germans give away. Also I didn't know that you were German. I find that to be interesting because i too am German.

  2. I'm not German, but have lived there for 6 years and in my own way helped shape celebration of Halloween in Germany. German kids would show up at our dooron Halloween night with no costume. "Keine Kostumin, Keine suesse!" They would return a little later with an improvised costume. To my knowledge, they only said, "Happy Halloween!" when I opened the door. This was near Ansbach.

    Also I have seen your website, "NH is great." Yes, it is, But Germany is also great! I miss it. email me at julietbolia@yahoo.com if you want to speak German with a local (for a laugh.)

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