Vappu / May Day
It's May!! Summer is sooo close! May 1st, also known as May Day is a festive day all over the world. But nowhere do people appreciate this day as Finns do! And as always we celebrate the eve of the big day and it's traditional to go for a picnic on the actual 1st May. This great event is called Vappu and I really recommend you visit Helsinki or Turku during this festival of Spring! (Unless you're a really uptight person who cannot bare seeing people consuming too much alcohol in a public place and being very loud.)
Vappu, like most our festivities probably originate from Sweden and it was firstly seen as a celebration for Spring. Then the industrialization came along and today the day is seen more as a working class's holiday around the world. In Finland the day has been taken over by university students. They roam the cities in their colourful overalls and at 6pm on the Eve of May 1st they are allowed to put on the white caps that we receive when we graduate from high school.
God I miss the student Vappu! Usually we started partying already a week beforehand and we had so much fun! No party matches the parties that are organized during Vappu! And the picnics the day after in a park were wonderful with sparkling wine, potato salad and sausages, salty pies and sugary (preferably self-made) doughnuts.
In Estonia first of May is like Halloween. It has something to do with witches... The way I saw it, it seemed like a cross between Halloween and Easter witches. So no big student parties, no gatherings of huge crowds to listen to speeches and no serpentine and balloons. But the weather this weekend was so amazing in Tallinn that I got to the Vappu feeling easily. So after the clock struck 12 in the afternoon on Saturday I sat myself on the Manna la Rosa terrace with a white wine. When I was joined by a friend we moved to another terrace for a salad lunch and more wine. In the evening I joined my brother's girlfriend and her floor ball team who had come to Tallinn for a tournament. So even though I felt something was missing with my white cap not being in Estonia and on my head this Vappu turned out really well!
On Sunday, the picnic day, I took a stroll on the beach and was shocked to see some people already in their bikinis lying in the sun... It was 12 degrees celsius. I picked some wood anemones which for Finns mean Mother's day is near, and joined the floor ball team for some shopping. I found a white lace summer dress that I have been searching for since winter. I think now I'm done with shopping for a while. So overall very successful and very enjoyable weekend, Vappu well spent!