Sunday, 4 May 2008

May Day love tokens

ribbons on twig
Last Thursday afternoon (30th April) I was amused to see a man dragging a wispy looking tree branch, which was taller than he was, along the pavement. It was covered in brightly coloured streamers made of crepe paper. I was more than a little puzzled. As I proceeded on my way home I spotted more people engaged in similar pursuits, many of them cyclists, balancing twigs and branches on their handle bars.

The next day, May Day, was another of Germany's wonderfully frequently occurring public holidays so I went for a little walk. I couldn't help noticing that many buildings were now adorned with these colourful boughs.

My curiosity was roused and so I did a little online research to find out what it all meant. Apparently it is a May Day custom. The tradition states that the bedecked boughs should be delivered by a male admirer to the house of his love interest on the eve of 30th April. On leap years, females have to take responsibility for delivery of the trees. As this is a leap year I guess I should have got one of these lovely gifts for Simon. Oh well. Until 2012 then...

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