For party-loving academics and administrators at the FernUniversität’s Hagen campus, business ground to a halt at exactly 13.13 on Thursday 16 February as carnival season got underway. After the pandemic-enforced restrictions of the last couple of years, it was a delight for revellers to once again participate in the (usually) annual event – Hagen’s nod to Weiberfastnachtsfeier – the Women’s Carnival.
The menfolk joined in the fun too, some dressed to the nines in outrageous ensembles, and some in boring but practical civvies. The event theme “FernUniversum” inspired the creative to come clad in all manner of dress, from astronaut’s attire to zodiac-themed clobber. Plenty accessorised their looks with a pair of antennae; fake moustaches were a dime a dozen, and some attendees had gone all out and painted their skin green.
Although she opted not to wear a costume, admin employee Franziska Köhler was thrilled to be at the celebration, “It is a joy to see that so many people have joined in the celebration this year,” she commented.
The staging of this and similar events is a tradition throughout North Rhine-Westphalia, where the jollity of the pre-Lent parties attracts not only people from across Germany, but also from around the world.
“The enthusiasm people have for carnival season is one thing that distinguishes those of us who hail from North Rhine-Westphalia,” says Desirée Kampmeier of the FernUniversität’s International Office. “We are all so pleased that after a couple of years of restrictions, carnival celebrations are back in abundance across the state.”
To enable staff to attend further carnival celebrations across the state and most notably in Cologne, the FernUniversität in Hagen will close, for most intents and purposes, at 12 noon on Monday 20 February (dubbed Rose Monday). Therefore, The English Café will be closed that day.
We will return on Wednesday 22 February at 5pm for an exciting hour on the differences between British and American conventions and usage of English, hosted by the International Office’s Nick Quaintmere.
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