Friday, May 1, 2009

May Day

Today I will be celebrating May Day, also known as International Worker's Day, for the very first time in my 27 years of living on planet Earth. It's Naja and Andy who are throwing a party, making a proper attempt to introduce their oblivious American friends - and European ditto - to something that's always been quite a big deal in Denmark. Interestingly so, not just for the actual labor movement, but equally so for teenagers and other youngsters with a predilection for sitting outside, drinking beer in the sun.

It's actually on days like this that I realize that even though Denmark is tiny, there's actually a huge difference between growing up in the suburbs I grew up in - which were populated by quite a bit of wealthy peeps - and suburbs, perhaps as little as ten minutes away from there.

Where I grew up, being a liberal-conservative was the norm, and thus venturing into Copenhagen to celebrate May Day was simply for the rebellious teenagers, and not for the likes of me. I remember, in fact, that the kids at my high school made a huge fuss (albeit jokingly so) about one of our teachers who was a proud member of the Danish Socialist People's Party. Can you believe it?! The thought of it makes me snicker now. Feel a little nauseated too. At the thought of how uninformed we were.

Later, as I finished school, started working, and eventually entered University - and the Faculty of Humanities at that - being left-wing became the norm. However, being enrolled in the Art History program, us girls ('cos there were only girls in our department) were more into sipping red wine over nice dinners than drinking beer with strangers.

But tonight, it will happen! In fact, I'm making plans to defy the U.S. laws and regulations and bring a bottle of beer into the street, locate a patch of grass (or a tree or some dirt, if all else fails) and sit down and drink and sing and speak loudly about labor unions.

At long last.

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