ame procedure as every year - we ended up staying right here in Heidelberg and watching our usual Faschingsumzug (parade). We met up with a friend at her place first and then watched from the Bergheimerstrasse. Alas, our friend was not nearly as excited as I was to go watch the parade. Although she had agreed to join us for it, I fear she finds herself among the German majority who hate this stupid childish holiday. Childish or not, I love parades! Even just on my way to her place I got a little burst of excitement watching the police start putting up traffic cones and fences to block off the parade route. Oh boy! Parade! She was too grown up for it though, and dragged her feet as much as possible so we missed the first third or so of the parade. Life-Tipp: You can do things with your friends, or you can do things your way, but sometimes those two are not the same. ;)
Since we arrived late we couldn't really get close. There were far more people on the Bergheimerstrasse than I expected! I remember watching from there the first year we were here and there weren't nearly as many people. Perhaps it was the great weather, which we have been enjoying for days in an incredible streak. GTFO winter!
Here are a couple of the pictures I got from my distant perch on a stoop. Also, you might enjoy this Wikipedia link that lists all the various Narrenruf, the things that people call out at these Fasching festivities. In Heidelberg it's Hajo! Apparently these things are really town-specific, which is so awesome. Pipe up Fasching-haters and tell me why you can't find anything to love about this holiday. :) Would I want to be on a vomit-carpeted Cologne train right around now? No way, but it's not all so bad. I prefer the traditions that are more southern - the freaky witch masks and the idea of chasing winter away. The Heidelberg Fasching seems to combine some of that and some other stuff like the old guys in goofy hats (which are ubiquitous on TV at this time of year).