Sorry again to everyone who missed yesterday's announcement, expecting to see the new proper chapter here. ^^;
This is the first of our little series of Aki experiencing some "German" (see disclaimer in the news) customs/traditions/holidays, St. Martin's day. This may seem like an odd one to start with; it's hardly a major holiday here, no day off, no big coverage, will probably pass by unnoticed for many who don't have/aren't kids. On the other hand, it seems quite fitting that it's the first one. Seeing some kids on their way several years ago was what made me think "Huh, that's a nice custom that most guys overseas probably don't even know about. Would be cute if I could share it by having Aki experience it, too bad it doesn't fit the story" (given that I was still writing T2t at the time).
Personally, I'm admittedly actually falling into the "it usually passes by more or less unnoticed" category. I'm not even sure if I participated often as kid. I only vaguely remember seeing the "splitting the mantle" story acted out once, I'm pretty sure we never had goose, and while I remember going to a bonfire, memories of that may be blending in with those of easter fires (we'll get to that later). What certainly did get stuck though, was making a lantern, going on the procession (having to be careful that the candle doesn't burn anything - not sure if that is a thing now in the days of cheap, small electric lights?), singing the songs - which probably is the most prominent part of this tradition.
(And in case you're wondering "I get why Aki could be there, given her heritage, but why would all the other kids from a Japanese kindergarten be there as well?" - did you really expect me to invent a whole lot of additional designs? ;P )