Monday, 29 May 2017

Off-Topic: The Münchingen Hoba Fest

Birmingham Gay Pride took place this weekend, May 27th and 28th. The Münchingen Hoba Fest also took place. What connects the two events? Nothing, except that they took place at the same time. Birmingham's Gay Pride is a big event that covers the whole city centre. Münchingen's Hoba Fest is a small event that covers the whole village centre, but there's not much to cover. After all, Münchingen only has a population of 8000.

The highlight of Birmingham's Gay Pride was a parade on Saturday. The highlight of the Hoba Fest was a stage with music and dancing girls. Two different worlds.

There was also a difference in the temperatures. In Münchingen it was 32 degrees, in Birmingham only 21 degrees. That didn't discourage the Birmingham revellers from shedding their clothes, while the Germans were in full uniform. That must say something about the two cultures.

Needless to say, I greatly enjoyed the Hoba Fest, despite the heat. I took a large number of photos, but most of them were blurred. I need to buy myself a good camera.

Everyone was enthusiastic about the dancing girls, even the youngest guests. The smallest visitors were allowed to stand at the front. The Germans are so civilised. I was happy to sit at a table with a glass of beer in my hand. I needed it in that heat.

In case you're wondering, Hoba is a Swabian word for knife. In past centuries the residents of the surrounding villages used it as a derogatory nickname for the people of Münchingen. The festival was only started recently, 20 years ago, when the negative connotations of the word were long forgotten. Birmingham's Gay Pride, on the other hand, is now in its 46th year. It started small and grew into a large event. Münchingen's Hoba Fest started small and will always remain small.

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