Bridge Days28 Apr 2007
While admiring the new design of the website for Christopher's school (looks like somebody has a Web 2.0 logo generator) a couple of days, I thought I'd check the the list of school holidays. When we put up paper calendars for 2007, we didn't write in the school holidays since we're still new at this school parenting business.
Sure enough there are some holidays coming up that we didn't plan for. The first is this coming Monday, the Day before May Day. This seems to be a sporadic holiday only celebrated when May Day falls on a Tuesday. We're totally unprepared... we not only have no plans, we didn't even take the day off from work. In our defense, my sister-in-law who has two kids in Gymnasium didn't know about it either, although the logistics of leaving 7th graders at home is a bit easier than for a 1st grader.
The next unexpected holiday was not so unexpected, the Day after Ascension. Ascension only falls on Thursday, and the next day must be the most unproductive work day on the German calendar. That the schools are also closed is then logical.
Finally there's a holiday that's totally new for us, Pentecost Tuesday (would that be Whittues in BrE)? In our years in Germany, we've never noticed that the kids go back to school a day later after the Pentecost weekend, probably because we've never had a kid in school.
So along with Report Card Vacation celebrated in February, we have a number of new holidays that we will be celebrating for the next 10 or 13 years (whichever the case may be). Note that these holidays are regionally variable. The schoolkids in Hamburg, for example, celebrate a yearly Ski Vacation, even though there is no place in Hamburg to ski.