At 2:17am I made plans to attend the May Day celebration on the Port Meadow at 6:00am. Given that I am already feeling excessively awake – for no reason I can easily identify – I think I will just stay up until then. There’s nothing like a neo-pagan fertility rite to welcome the arrival of springtime. According to Wikipedia:
Traditional English May Day rites and celebrations include Morris dancing, crowning a May Queen, celebrating Green Man day and dancing around a Maypole. Much of this tradition derives from the pagan festival of Beltane. May Day has been a traditional day of festivities throughout the centuries. It is most associated with towns and villages celebrating springtime fertility and revelry with fetes and community gatherings. Perhaps the most significant of the traditions is the May Pole, around which traditional dancers circle with ribbons.
There is more information available here.
Apparently, Emily’s sculptor-father is in charge of the celebrations taking place on the Port Meadow. This makes them especially interesting for those of us in the program, and especially those of us who have met him.