When my Mom was a girl growing up in Iowa she had fond memories of May Day. My guess is that these memories involved a May Pole, flowers and etc.
Being a good Mom she wanted to pass this pleasant experience on to her children.
THIS is where I come in.
My guess is that I was of Kindergarten or First Grade age. It was a Saturday morning and my Mom took me, my younger sister and two of the neighborkids to the local park. Along with the neighbor boy, I was dressed in a clown outfit. I know this not only because of my vague recollection, but also because I have seen a picture of me sitting with the neighbor boy in our clown outfits. My hazy memory is of my sister and the neighbor girl wearing dresses.
The morning dragged on and at some point things went into the Activity Center thing that the park had. It was in here that we walked (paraded?) around the room and then I sat, in my clown outfit, as I watched other people in the middle of the room.
I did all of this without question, or even any explanation as to what this was all about; I was an obedient child like that.
Many years later I asked my Mom what that whole day was about. It was then that she shared that it was a May Day festival… I told her that for all of these years I have wondered about that day. She then shared about her childhood memories and wanting to pass along a pleasant experience with her children.
She passed on a memory allright… It’s not like I was not beaten or anything, I just had no clue what I was doing and why I was dressed like a clown… and it was boring.
I think my Mom found amusement in my lostness over the whole situation as is evident by her words that I received from her today via email:
Thinking of you today and wondering if you went to any May Day parties, this is your favorite holiday!
Now May Day is a good natured joke between my Mom and me. I guess a pleasant memory was created after all.