Two weeks ago we celbrated Vappu. It is the Finnish May Day, and Vappu Eve is the Finnish Walpurgis Night, something I remember reading about first in Goethe’s Faust. It still exists.
The official beginning of Spring, a sort of labour day and student day rolled into one, marking the half-way between the equinox and the summer solstice, it involves two days of crazyness, and wearing old hats that people get when they graduate from upper secondary school (high school).
A statue in the city centre gets a hat, too:
Yellowed hats are supposed to recall many years of successful Vappu celebrations. On Vappu Eve, there is a lot of drinking on the street, particularly sparkling wine and champagne. This is Vappu Eve perfection:
The day after this revelry there is a picnic in Kaivopuisto, which was inundated with portable saunas. As per tradition, the weather was cold and rainy– but still beautiful.
After a couple of hours we retreated inside for 9 hours of relaxed revelry with friends. It was extremely fun. A tremendous amount of food was consumed.
The birds were still partying the next day:
When the storm cleared away, leaving this amazing sky: