I was planning on a May Day post today. I knew the holiday would be different this year, that there would be no large gatherings. But I thought there would still be some observance.
So yesterday evening I dropped by the Sulzburg Market Square, thinking I would at least see this year’s Maypole being erected. There was nothing.
Then I looked at this post from last year and realized how difficult it would be to celebrate the day in this era of social distancing. Our village depends on people power, not technology, for a lot of things, and putting up the Maypole is one of them. No two-metre separation possible for those carrying the pole.
So I decided instead to share this post from last year. It is still a holiday today, though I have no idea what (if anything) is being done to celebrate it.
It’s a holiday today in Sulzburg. Last year I was out of town and didn’t know what I was missing. I really don’t know anything about May 1 celebrations – we don’t have them in Canada, at least not that I have ever seen.
When we signed the lease for our apartment in Sulzburg we received not only keys to our apartment but keys to the front gate, which we were told is locked only one day a year. May 1. Supposedly the crowds are rowdy.
There was no evidence of that last night as the Maypole was erected in the market square. There wasn’t much of a crowd for that either. No speeches (or maybe I left too soon) or ceremony, just a few fire fighters (Sulzburg has what I presume is a volunteer fire department) and a fork lift. Now I know how they do it.
All the villages around here have Maypoles – it is a big thing culturally.
The Maypole will sit in the square for the next month. Longer if, like last year, birds choose to nest and lay eggs in it. They get a lot of use out of last year’s Christmas tree.
I gather the month kicks off with a mini-festival of some kind all day in the square. Surprisingly there have been no details – I knew about the Maypole being raised, but hadn’t seen any other information about the festivities. Maybe it is one of those things everyone knows about already.