I grew up in Norway and the 17th of May, next to Christmas, was the far most exciting day during the whole year. The constitution of Norway was signed on this day in 1814 and the huge celebration the Norwegians partake every year is like nothing else, as it brings the whole nation out into the streets and touches the hearts of every young child (it is also called the children’s day) and to those of the elderly. As a child, I would look forward to this day for months. Not only in Norway but in every Norwegian community around the world is this day celebrated with great parades with music corps, speeches, loads of fun games for the children, traditional food, and of course the national anthem being sung with joy, pride and devotion.
I moved abroad 30 years ago this year, and I have only been back a few times to celebrate Syttende mai since then. Last year though, a dream came true when I was back to celebrate the 200-year anniversary weekend, together with close to 50 of our friends that my husband and I had invited, from mostly Sweden. We were super lucky with the weather and had the best time on a gorgeous sunny and warm day.
Today, one year after the celebration I have received so many thank you messages from my friends that all remember the day and weekend we had with such joy and gratitude. How sweet and kind of them to share and let me know! I am forever grateful that my dream to share my cultural tradition with good friends was such a success.