I don’t think I’m breaking any sort of news if I say that Twelfth Night was more then a month ago. I’m not talking about the play of the same name by William Shakespeare but the time when Christmas decorations should be taken down. The Wikipedia article above says the view that evergreen Christmas decorations should be removed by Twelfth Night is a modern one and that previously it was Candlemas which falls forty days after the birth of Jesus, or 2nd February. It was the day when evergreen Christmas decorations were supposed to be taken down “for traces of berries, holly and so forth will bring death among the congregation before another year is out.” In our household we generally hold to the modern superstition and take all decorations down by the end of 5th January. So when I was walking towards the Scluthfeld tram stop, after spending half an hour in Strasbourg Police Station after one of the more productive parts of a long-running saga that should be another post all in itself, and I saw the house decorated as above I was surprised at the longevity of their decorations. The municipal decorations were not removed by Twelfth Night but were down in time for Cadlemas. Having seen one example I then saw the next opposite my home where, not only were the evergreen decorations still in place but the flashing lights are also still going strong. Then yesterday on the way home after work I walked through Place de la Cathedrale and saw the decorations on the building opposite the Cathedrale (wiki) and then later on the above shop on Grand Rue which not only do the decorations remain but also the boards to allow you to take a picture of yourself or others as a king or a queen left from the Christmas Market which finished at Christmas. For me the winner though is the Italian taylor at Faubourg National pictured left.
On the day celebrating another Christian Saint, JTO and I have exchanged gifts and I leave with this picture of our bikes and if you do not know why this is so much what today is about, then you do not understand what today is about: