1st of May – Labours day

Since this is a blog about my daily life and the significant four seasons in Norway, I can’t miss the chance to tell you about another sign of spring – 1st of May, the labours day. I’m not that political active and was born a true capitalist, but have gradually changed into a social democrat. Who know, I might die as a communist :-)

The socialist Labour Party is responsible for the creation of Labour Day. It became a Norwegian national holiday celebrated every May 1st following World War II, but the idea originated in Paris at international labour congress in 1898. Labour Day was strictly observed in Norway for the first few decades of its existence. At that time, the life of workers was hard. Working six to seven days a week, ten hours a day, for very little money was the norm. A national day of rest was truly a significant event back then.

Today, referring to my article below, since Norway is ranked the best place to live in, there are new battles to fight: equal rights between the sexes, improvement of education, anti social dumping (there are a lot of foreign workers in Norway with low wages) and some even fight for a 4 day work of week. What I like the best though, is that the demonstrators are more focused on unfairness and difficulties in other parts of the world and people who are repressed and threatened for their race, religion or the colour of their skin.

RennyBA, Norway’s next Prime Minister :-)

On the 1st of May in Norway, political leaders give their speeches all over the country. In Oslo, at the “Labours Square, Youngstorget, LO (The Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions) are the host. In the picture above, you see the podium and I could not resist having myself captured from there. Maybe I run for Prime Minister in the next election :-)

What reminds me most of spring this day is the brass marching band playing in the parade. I love their music and it is like hearing the nation coming out of hibernation. Most of the bands in Norway are school bands which have been practising all winter long and are now ready to salute the new season. They will be an important part of our 17th of May – our National day – and I can hardly wait to tell you about it. Then the children will be the participants in the parade. That is what’s so charming about how Norway celebrates their signing of the constitution.

I had my mobile phone with me of course – as always – and since it also makes videos, I will like to show you an example of the brass marching band playing. Not the best quality, but I hope you get the idea of them. One of my bonus children is playing in a band like this. And this year, their grandmother from the US is coming over. We can hardly wait to show her the proud drummer playing for her on the 17th of May. So stay tuned.

I’m going to Sofia, Bulgaria, this week, so it might take a while before I’m back with another sign of spring in Norway and some pictures from Bulgaria as well!

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  1. I do hope you will be elected as the next Prime Minister! ;-)
    Looks like the first of May is a fun day.
    Wish you a good & safe travel to Bulgaria.

  2. it is interesting to know that may 1 was celebrated as labor day in many countries. am happy to say that this year the labor day was held very peaceful, although with protest but generally peaceful :)

  3. Great photos… I do miss all things that happen in Europe like May 1st. Oh well, maybe one day hubby and I will be there to live.

  4. @Sidney: So I count in one vote from the Philippines then? :-) Thanks for you’re wish – I’ll keep you posted you know:-)

    @Cruise: Yes at least the Norwegians are very peaceful but stuborn you know:-)

    @You are both very much welcome back to Europe any time – and give me a hint if Norway will be on the list!

  5. hey Renny – my family is actually originally from Norway! I’m about the 5th Generation here in North America with other family members in Germany. I have yet to visit and would hope we could do so one summer for sure! But we don’t even have a hint when a vacation will be on the agenda… grrr…

  6. yep I agree with cruise, I noticed that,too. It was (maybe not the most) but peaceful labor day indeed:)

    enjoy your trip to Bulgaria! take care!

  7. ahhh first of May is one of the most celebrated holiays around the world. Over here, people are advised not to go out and some public transpos are suspended. Even some schools have no classes all because of taken precautions on possible bombings related to the demonstrations in the streets.

    Enjoy your trip to Bulgaria. You are just an overnight train away from Istanbul!

  8. nice photos and I hope that you will have a pleasant trip to Sofia! See yah around soon!

  9. everyone loves a parade! it’s amazing how even the meanest people i know soften like butter when there is a parade.

  10. if you become the next PM, i’d be at your service.

    Cheers and have a nice trip!

  11. hi rennyba, It’s easy and pleasant to sit back and watch the parade right?

    Haven’t update my blog still busy :)

    *wave hands back*

  12. I was told that Norway has extremely good social programs and especially for single women. It is a very hard country to leave. A friend’s son is over in Oslo, married to a native of Norway and she doesn’t want to leave, and yet he wants to return to Canada as he will find it difficult to get a job as a journalist. The language may be a difficulty for him. What does one do in that situation? Both have a lot to lose and they are now separated but trying counseling.

  13. Hi Renny,

    Wow, you’re getting very sophisticated in your blogging career!

    I enjoyed your video and description of this significant national holiday.

    We celebrate Labor Day, too, in the U.S., but at the end of summer. Personally, I think it should be at the end of winter, as in Norway & Europe, but I think that the association with “May Day” and any and all things related to communism must have scared the previous generations here who decided such things. Ha ha.

    I guess our biggest parade day is July 4th, our day of celebration of independence from Britain. However, St. Patrick’s Day probably boasts the biggest and best parades of all the holidays here, especially in the northeast U.S.

    A lot of Americans claim ancestors from Ireland, as well as from Germany, Norway, Scotland, Italy, Poland, etc. But the new faces on our streets these days come more from India, Latin America, China and other developing nations. Still, though, I understand a fair share are from Ireland, as usual.

    Speaking of immigration, I am fully in favor of federal legislation to give amnesty to the 11 million illegal aliens living here. They are making an invaluable contribution to our society, and keeping us vibrant and open.

    Just think — 11 million people!

    Aside from any political argument, my guiding principle on this issue is that there is enough for all, everybody.

    Renny, God bless you on your trip. Be safe and well, and keep on posting more wonderful, interesting stories about life in beautiful Norway.

    – Bud

  14. @ExpatT: Yes, there is a lot of Norwegians in the US:-)
    @Chris: I do agree – it’s just lovely to see and hear them!
    @Tracie: Thanks!
    @Cheh: Peaceful demonstration works the best you know!
    @Duke: Sorry to hear you have to protect yourself that way and i feel blessed living in Norway.
    @Chas: Thanks and now I am back. Will keep you all posted soon!
    @April: I do agree and softened they were:-)
    @Da Ignorant Know It All: Thanks for the compliment! I’ll stop by soon.
    @LS: It’s always good to have a secretary you know – you’re hired:-)
    @LadyWhiteSpririt: Keep posting – thanks for the waves back!
    @Mother: Yes, the social program is generally good.I do understand the situation, but it is difficult to give an apropriate advice and hard to learn the language too. Maybe to try to find a job where he can use his own language and take advantage of it?
    @Buddy: Thanks for taking you’re time for sharing you’re thoughts, ideas and views! I know you have a lot of imigrants and do agree in you’re attitude. For the most part they contribute a lot if you give them the chance. 11 million is a lot – more than twice of the population in Norway!

    To all: Thanks for all you best wishes on my trip to Sofia. It was fantastic, great, exiting and lovely. Please give me just a bit of time and I’ll keep you posted!

  15. I missed your post last year! I didn’t post about the 1 st may this year. I must say I don’t live in a big city like you. i would have to drive to Marseille to take the temperature and the atmospher! Perhaps the next year! I’m a little busy these days because we organise the start of Anaïs to Finland this summer and my other daughter to Liverpool! I’m sad I’d like to have more time to blog!
    Bye bye Renny

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