We find ourselves in the middle of the Christmas season and the People's Republic wishes all our (one) reader(s) greetings of the season. There are no speeches on Christmas Day by the head of state in the People's Republic - and if there was, it would be more likely to take place on the 28th of December.
For those of you that don't know, the 28th has been declared the festival of Winterval in the People's Republic ever since 1998, when the City Council decided to replace the Christmas festivities with the Winterval festival so as not to offend our any of our ethnic (or should I say religious) minorities. In 1998, Christmas was on a Friday meaning that the Bank Holiday for Boxing Day was taken on the Monday the 28th and the rest is history. Updated 30/12/2008: Just in case you are considering quoting this to prove a point of political correctness gone mad, Birmingham City Council did not abolish Christmas in favour of a made-up festival called Winterval. Please see this post for further details.
In recent years Christmas in Birmingham has taken on some traditions. The Wheel of Birmingham is now here all year round, but we see the return at this time of year of the kids train sponsered by Centro (but luckily not run by Central Trains, so it actually runs on time) and the outdoor skating rink in Centenary Square. We also see the return of the Frankfurt German Market, our twin city, where we can drink mulled wine and German beer, eat Pretzels and German sausage and buy assorted trinkets and craftwork. This year the market research really paid off as a Bluenose stall was available. Super stuff.
I wonder if there is a Brummie Market in Frankfurt?