The whole reason for our visit to Germany was the wedding of Katrin BÃ¶ttger and Falko – now Falko BÃ¶ttger-Hiller. I really like that he adopted her name. The traditional reasoning for it is that BÃ¶ttger is a rare and beautiful name and having only two girls in the family it would be lost.
The wedding was quite spectacular and I’m told a very good example of a traditional German wedding with a number of personal twists. We had an amazing time, as I think Katrin and Falko did too. They are in Egypt on their honeymoon.
The event began with a legal wedding ceremony in a castle. This is Julia and Katrinâ€™s great-aunt heading up to the castle.
We waited outside for awhile until Katrin and her dad showed up on this little rig.
This is where the ceremony took place. The organ in the corner was played by Bach â€œno touching!â€
Alex, a friend of Juliaâ€™s played a beautiful medley on the piano. We stayed with him a lot throughout the wedding, and even ran into him afterwards.
Afterwards there was a little parade out of the castle. While they had their photos taken we sampled from the big bottles of champagne and spread of endless hâ€™orderves.
Christian took over as wedding-photographer when the real one mysteriously disappeared.
Then they took off to the church in the funny cart.
We didnâ€™t get any photos inside the church, but it was an interesting ceremony. Being all in German, a lot was lost on me, but some things were translated by Alex and Christianâ€™s friend Anne. There was also a sign-language interpreter which believe-it-or-not was a help to me. Katrin is a trained sign-language interpreter. This clothes-line of baby clothes was strung up before they came out of the church.
Before crossing the line of baby-clothes, Falko threw down hand fulls of coins that all the little kids collected up into baskets.
After the coin-toss was the traditional sawing of a logâ€¦
Then they released a basket-full of doves.
Then off to the reception hall in this pretty thing.
We followed in this big old bouncy bus with a hitch on the back.
Katrin and Falko decorated the hall themselves with pretty arrangements and place-card-holders made out of pieces of wood and beakers (Falkoâ€™s a chemist). The hall belongs to a German football club, who I guess ended up in fourth place in some big thing or other.
Entertainment was pretty well non-stop all night. There were speeches, games, a video, a live band, and this pair of professional dancers. The BÃ¶ttgerâ€™s are a dancing family. Julia and Katrin are both amazing (Christian and Katrin were salsa partners in Stockholm), but their parents really blew me away. They danced the night away and were truly amazing.
Hereâ€™s another custom. A loaf of bread and a shaker of salt. One for happiness, one for prosperity I think.
Then they had to figure out how to open this big box made out of a log, to find the coordinates for a map that told them where their honeymoon would be. A number of the family members pitched in to send them to Egypt.
h yeah, did I mention there was a huge fireworks display? It was as big as anything Iâ€™ve seen in Barrie on Canada Day.
The bride and groom had to dance off their shoes made of bread. There was no winner unfortunately, I think the bread was pretty solid, but they put in a good effort.
Christian had to get up to represent North America – Falkoâ€™s hat said something about Obama on it. There’s definitely some language confusion in this picture.
Hereâ€™s Katrinâ€™s parents up there dancing away. Itâ€™s probably 1am at this point. We left at 3 I think.
My appologies if this was a long long post, but a lot happened and we had a really great time. Thanks a million Katrin and Falko, and Katrin’s whole family.