Sunday, December 4, 2011
For Christmas, Five Gold Rings or a Glockenspiel?
The video above, from a Julie Andrew's Christmas Special made in the 1980s, was a great favorite of my sister, our mom, and me. We always played it at least once during the Christmas season and I still have the video tape of the original program that featured Julie, John Denver, Placido Domingo, and the King's Singers. My limited German allowed for some translation but I could never figure out just what kind of a Kuckucks Uhr (Coo Coo Clock) was presented on the first day of Christmas, even though I would hear the German words twelve times per song.
The video segment of the song finally turned up on You Tube but with Spanish subtitles. I know some Spanish too, but evidently whoever uploaded this video was as puzzled as I was by that coo coo clock.
At Christmas time two years ago, I sent the video to a distant German cousin who now lives and works in Bavaria. At the time, he had lost his sound card on his home computer but promised to try to give me a complete translation, especially to the words before the first item, the ... Kuckucks Uhr.
For my birthday in February, I got a birthday greeting from our cousin and a great present - the complete translation. Now I could stop going crazy trying to figure out that silly coo-coo clock's description. I'm putting it on my memory blog so I never have to wonder again.
THE TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS, German version with some Spanish added
"Zu Weihnachten schenke ich Dir mit Liebe:
(For Christmas I give to you with love:)
1. Eine bunt bemalte Kuckucks Uhr (A multicolored cuckoo clock)
2. Ein Bier Krug (beer mug)
3. Ein Tirolerhut (Tyrolean hat)
4. Einen Gugelhupf (Specialty Austrian dessert, similar to a Bundt cake. Gugelhupf consists of a soft yeast dough which contains raisins, almonds and Kirschwasser cherry brandy.)
5. Ein Glockenspiel
6. Fünfzig Pfeffernüsse (fifty peppernuts - one German kind is made with baking soda and baking powder, honey, and is frosted)
7. Zwei Wienerschnitzel (we Germanic types all know what two Wienerschnitzel means)
8. Ein Spitzendirndl (traditional alpine fashion - some kind of "lace dirndl")
9. Ein Apfelstrudel (an apple strudel)
10. Ein Federkissen (feather pillow)
11. Two Zwetschgenknödl (two plum dumplings - "Zwetschge" is another and more complicated word for "Pflaume" - plum. It seems to be of alpine origin (swiss?) - but I'm not so sure about that).
12. 50 Knackwürste? (Its a germanic sausage and is made with pork)