Chocolate, and hot cross buns
It’s Easter. I had to be reminded of the fact, as I am not (and have never been) remotely religious. All over the world, committed Christians are celebrating perhaps their most important religious festival, and I am more or less oblivious to their devotions.
I get mixed up. I thought last Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, but that was wrong. But some things I am sure of. At Easter, we get chocolate eggs, as gifts. (Well most children do, anyway) And we can also buy hot cross buns. (They are not hot, unless you heat them up, which few people do now. But they have a pastry cross on them, for religious significance.) Trouble is, when I was young, you could only get those buns on one or two days of the year, obviously around Easter time. But now, you can get them all year round, so almost everyone has forgotten what they mean.
Same thing with those chocolate eggs. They used to be in the shops from the middle of March, but now they appear just after Christmas, being sidelined briefly for Valentine’s Day. Then there are Easter Cards (who sends them?) and small fluffy chick toys. They also pop up in early January, so by the time Easter arrives, they have usually been bought, put away, and forgotten. And Easter moves around. It is never on the same day, so it seems to an unbeliever like me. That makes it harder to keep track of, let’s face it.
Then there is the weather. In the UK, Easter is a long weeked. People are off from Thursday night, until Tuesday morning. But it’s at a time of year when the weather is notoriously unreliable in the British Isles. The redoubtable people of this sceptred isle still tend to go away somewhere anyway, if only to visit relatives, or to sit in a caravan by the coast. Then they can look at the grey skies, listening to the children complaining, as the rain beats down on the roof. Add to that the schools get a two-week holiday during some of the worst weather of the year, and you can guarantee a lot of very unhappy under-18s will be bemoaning their fate.
In some places, including many parts of the UK, religious people will be joyously celebrating whatever it is they celebrate at this time of year. Good luck to them, and I wish them well.
For the rest of us, it is too much chocolate, buns that are not hot, and too much time off, in abysmal weather. And no shops open on Easter Sunday, not even the greedy supermarkets. But that’s a good thing.
Happy Easter, to one and all.