I have a problem with Religious holidays in the UK. I know we live in a ‘Christian’ country and I think it’s great that we get ‘free’ days off work and all, but I find the Religious bit tricky. I’m sure that most of the UK don’t consider themselves particularly Christian-I see more cars in the car park at the swimming pool than the church on a Sunday. That’s awesome-Sundays have shorter trading hours and families are encouraged to spend time together, rather than expected to go to church. I don’t have a problem with church or Christianity of any flavour, by the way, and if you let me do my thing, then I’ll fight for your right to do yours.
The problem I have is that the Bank Holiday system in the UK is based on Religious dates. Today is Good Friday, which is something to do with that Jesus. Sunday is Easter and then there’s another Bank Holiday on Monday for some reason. I’m Pagan by default, and celebrate the changing of the seasons rather than anything to do with any Prophet or Deity. I don’t really celebrate Easter. I don’t really celebrate Mother’s day. I do however, partake in the Spring festival of Oestra, which is a bit of both. For my first Oestra as a mama, we started what will hopefully become a family tradition. We headed out to our local independent record store, swapped shiny new money for dusty old vinyl, went home and danced all afternoon. We ate chocolate and looked at birds and were grateful for both our family and our ability to have a family. None of this involved overpriced flowers, cards with twee sentiment or chocolate eggs.
There is a ‘summer’ Holiday in the UK at some point, and that’s secular as far as I can tell. I know that holidays are all historic and based in the industrial revolution, but I end up having far too many conversations about ‘what I did for Easter’, as it’s just so ingrained that we will celebrate. The other problem is that the dates of Easter and Mother’s Day MOVE each year, and Oestra doesn’t really (FYI kids, it’s the Spring Equinox, around March 21st). That means I often end up taking holiday to celebrate the festivals that matter to me. Sigh. It’s a First World Problem, I know. I just felt particularly ranty about it this afternoon.
Here are some pictures of my kid to cheer things up.
All Milo wants to do lately is read. It’s awesome.
Milo’s first time on a boat. I was petrified. He loved it.
Milo’s really looking like his Daddy these days.