Sunday, April 19, 2009

Burn Böögg, Burn

I’ve got to say, when it comes to summer weather prediction, the Swiss have got it right. I mean, who wants to rely on a wimpy Groundhog seeing its shadow (like they do in the U.S.) when you can name a snowman the “Böögg”, burn him at the stake while prancing around him on horseback, and use this as a reason to take the afternoon off from work?

Forget sweet little Heidi. The Böögg is the bomb in Switzerland.

And he really does explode. He’s made of straw and cotton and filled with firecrackers. The longer it takes for his head to blow up, the longer it will take for summer to appear. The festival is called Sechseläuten and will be held this year on April 20th in Zurich.

Despite the Böögg’s fate, I don’t feel sorry for him at all. Even though he’s going to end up in a pile of ashes no matter what, it sort of serves him right. I mean last year, his firework-packed head took over 26 minutes to blow up. The nerve. Because as most Swiss people know, any Böögg explosion time lasting over about 10 minutes predicts a cold, hard summer for Switzerland.

I don’t know if I can even call what we had last year a summer. So I’m ready to see this Böögg guy burn. Especially since this year, thanks to a Swiss friend with access to a balcony above it all, I might actually see more than the back of people’s heads and the rising smoke.

But no matter where I end up for the festivities, let’s just hope last year’s outcome doesn’t repeat itself. Because by last July, it was sweater time. As I put on my black coat to mourn the weather, there was only one guy I could blame. And his name was Böögg.


Kylie said...

I'll be looking for you up on that balcony tomorrow, as I watch from behind people's heads :) Great new header on the blog, btw!

Chantal said...

Glad you like the header. Yeah, I'll be crashing the Swiss party on the opera house balcony. Can't wait.

Bethy{aka}lilsis said...

Lol, I'd love to see that!!! In some ways, we are just no fun in the States :-)

Chantal said...

Yeah, the whole thing is pretty bizarre. But fun!


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