It has been a very busy week that has been different in many ways. Many reasons why I have not been releasing much the last few days. But after this weekend I hope I will be able to release regularly for at least a week before the summer holiday starts for real. But today I want to talk about the Swedish celebration that is only trumped by Christmas, midsummers eve.
In Sweden we celebrate the summer solstice. This has a very long tradition and is full of myths ant ancient symbolism.
A normal midsummer starts with a lunch. We eat large amounts of fresh potatoes. We eat this with soure cream and chive. And as with every Swedish celebration we also eat pickled herring and at midsummer we have the matjessill – that is a version spiced a bit differently. The traditional beverage is nubbe – this is an ice cold schnapps or spiced vodka.
After lunch we generally dress the maypole. Leaves and flowers around this cross with two big rings attached. This is, contrary to what could be thought, not a christian symbol. It is actually a large fallus symbol. There are traditional dances being done around the pole. And to have everyone involved there are also dances for the really young ones. “Little frogs” is probably the most famous.
During the day you should pick seven different flowers and place them under your pillow. It is said that you will dream about the person you will marry. If you don’t, you probably just picked the wrong flowers.
This is an evening for party and having fun. Drinking and dancing into the wee hours of the morning. And needless to say, there is a reason a lot of kids are being born in March.
I wish you a happy midsummer and see you back here on Monday!