Fasnacht, carnival, and things I know little about...
I thought the carnival system in Switzerland lasted for a week or two, but I learned it is actually a few months. There is an interesting blend of gugga musicians, people dressing in costumes and other festivities that I really don’t have much of a clue as to what it all means – simply because I don’t speak the language and i don't go out and party.
Also, after doing shows and work was “entertainment” to the masses, well, the reality is concerts, parties; events are not really part of my life. Entertainment to me is sitting in a space working up new ideas.
While I don’t attend or subscribe to the normal “fun” of life, I do enjoy seeing the qualities of creativity that are demonstrated by the people making floats, costumes and the overall community spirit. The nice part is I don’t see people getting sh*tfaced drunk, or using the carnival as an excuse to party. This could be that I am old? I hardly drink? Or I simply get up early and like the idea of a decent few hours of sleep?
They have an event called a monstergugga, which is the amalgamation of several dozen gugga bands, each between 20 and 50 people all playing together as one. That sounds interesting to hear and see one day.
The rest, are a parade of sorts where floats and various bands walk down the street and people in costume throw out confetti at anyone and anything that moves. It is a nice visual to see and experience. The costumes are also quite a bit more interesting than what I remember in the USA with store bought Halloween costumes.
As I walked away from session the first session of creating a lab space equipment list, it was I am guessing lunchtime in Switzerland. Think back to the USA, where everyone used to work at the same time, take lunch at the same time, and shop on Saturdays. It is still a bit like that here. As I walked along, I heard various bands playing and it turns out each school had kids outside in their costumes, listening to the bands playing, basically having a good time.
My favorite are the little kids. There is a great beauty in a childlike heart. They were all in their costumes (pretty slick designs too) dancing along, singing and actually part of the show. The older kids were too old and cool to just dance along and sing.
I guess the moment and the person I felt the most for was an elderly woman who was outside the entrance of the library with a vacuum cleaner. The town center was covered in a layer of various color confetti that I am assuming was from the previous nights event.
She took her vacuum hose, just worked her way down the ancient brick or cobble stone road and sucked all the confetti.
I should have taken an image of it, as it was a tiny square all clean in a sea of colored dots.
What does this have to do about anything? Not much. The more I write up the list of what one could use or need to make a decent lab, the more I realize how much it cost me to learn about everything. Then I was reading a book from some old monks in the desert and what they were talking about, was the weaknesses of man and the difference between passions and virtues.
I guess the photo is appropriate, I have a whole lot of stuff clogging up my heart and soul. Each day I try like that woman with the vacuum to clean everything up, but alas, I guess this is the battle one can wage each day by trying to change, no matter how much trash the world throws your way each day.
I will try to get some images of this “gugga” and carnival for you. I guess the simplicity of it all is slowly changing more like the Mardi gras in New Orleans where it has become a cottage industry and societal element with status?
But you think of a young kid, running with a huge smile on their face and throwing confetti and I think you get a better visual of the intended spirit of carnival.