Saturday, January 29, 2005

The hop crown will be mine!

I have a soft spot for Belgian beers. A very soft, very squishy spot that demands a decent percentage of my paycheck to indulge.
It takes three years for the children of Poperinge to shake themselves free from the nightmares of the Hop Festival and its viciously exacting parading technique (the total length of the pageant is 3 540 m; participants marching at 2 km per hour, are thus on their way for 1h52' and give you an uninterrupted show piece of 56', etc.). Nevertheless, this coming September, those little tykes will once again transform into "a survey of the friends and enemies of the hop plant: hundreds of cheerful children, disguised as caterpillar, butterfly, red spider, dragon-fly, ladybird will provoke a spontaneous applause." I, for one, am always eager to be provoked into do something spontaneous, so this autumn we're off to Poperinge so that I may claim my hop crown at the 2005 Hop Pageant.
Anyone who's had a fresh glass of Poperinge Hommel ale would understand the urge to run headlong into the very fields of pre-harvest hops which add their noble characteristics to a vast array of Belgian and German beers. But truly, it's travel tales like this classic from the Alström brothers that really set my sights on spending one of those "big" birthdays so far from most people's idea of a fantasy vacation. Not that I expect to see the flying Chouffe. But at least I'll have the theme song on the car stereo while I'm cruising through Wallonia.


Blogger Aimee M. said...

If the pageant length is 3,540 meters, and the average speed is 2 kilometers per hour, what is the average velocity of an average beer-laden ladybug if she had weisswurt for breakfast?

11:08 PM  

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