Dublin’s first Christmas village: ”I believe in Christmas”

Marco Reinke

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First Christmas Market Dublin - Photo Credit Marco Reinke
First Christmas Market Dublin – Photo Credit Marco Reinke

For me as a German there is one thing that belongs to the weeks before Christmas: A ”Weihnachtsmarkt” (= Christmas market). It is the place in town where you spend quiet a while with your friends and drink some mulled wine and just stroll between the booths.

Now during my semester abroad I will get home just a few days before Christmas, so there is not much time to spend there. On Thursday, the Christmas village at Dublin’s Custom House Quay has just opened and the lights on the 50 feet Christmas tree have been turned on:

This 50 ft-tree should rival the 75ft-Rockefeller tree in New York, the organizers state on their website. It is the first time that the ”I Believe in Christmas”-village takes place in Dublin.

Germany is still the home  of Christmas markets. In Nuremberg in Bavaria the greatest market takes place. The ”Nürnberger Christkindlesmarkt” counts two million visitors every year.

When I think of a Christmas market I have a smell in my nose that is not easy to describe. A mixture of mulled wine,  roasted almonds and deep-frying doughs. The small alleyways are so small that you can just walk in walking speed through the rows.

It was 7 pm on Thursday when we arrived at Custom House Quay – the typical German christmas market time. But in the Irish version there were just a few people walking by. Hmmm. We were five German students and looked for our loved mulled wine. We know that alcoholic drinks in Ireland are much more expensive, but a cup of mulled wine should cost € 6 – to compare it: In Germany a cup of mulled wine costs € 2.50 including extra rum or amaretto. But this was our first mulled wine for this year, so we invested it. The taste of Dublin’s mulled wine is quiet sweet with a rough note.

Walking through a few plain white tents, listening to distant Christmas music. Real Christmas feeling does not come up. The reason could be that it there is no snow and the temperature is still over 10 degrees. Dublin’s first Christmas village is a good start to attune the Dubliners to the pre-christmas time. But to get the level of the German paragon the smell needs to come up.

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Marco Reinke