Norway Day could not be any more different from Australia Day. For instance there are no beach-trips (too cold), no beer (ice cream preferred) and no board shorts (we dress up). We have national costumes called a bunad and there are many variations of it, depending on where in the country you are from. In my home town the bunad is either green or blue. Mine is green and it is very dear to me, it was inherited from my beautiful grandma. There are also bunads for men and my dad has one and I think it is pretty cool.
My parents made me try on my bunad the day before Norway Day because they weren't sure if it would fit. Not everyone gets (or wants) a bunad but it is very common to get one for your confirmation when you are around 14-15 years old. It is common to wear it on Norway Day, for confirmations and occassionally on Christmas Eve. My parents got married in their bunads but that's not common either.
Because my beautiful little (but taller) sister was waiting for her bunad to be ready for her confirmation a week after Norway Day, she borrowed mine and I borrowed my mum's bunad which is techniqally her wedding dress. Are you still following? My mum's bunad looks different because she grew up in the south of Norway. I also made sure my grandma's dog Bertha was included in the celebrations. She was not a fan of staying home but I am sure she loved being decorated.
My dad makes sure he fits into his bunad every year in time for Norway Day. His bunad-dieting is famous. May is spring-time in Norway (although I was told it snowed last weekend) and it is the perfect time to celebrate.
Mike wore Norway flag cufflinks, sadly I don't have a picture of them. We picked up his gorgeous suit in Bangkok.
Seventeenth of May is also called the children's day because it is really all about the children. Every kindergarden, primary and high school walk in parades and afterwards there are games and ice cream. The special treat is always the travelling tivoli which stops by Bodø every year in May. Here I am waiting for the parade to begin. There are also marching bands playing and it is just beautiful.
My sister was one of the flagbearers for her school's parade.
The parade is still going. Each grade from each school have their own self-made banner.
Marit and I enjoying the sunshine.
In 2010 we celebrated Norway Day in Sydney and we did the parade from Hyde Park to Darling Harbour.
We did the same in 2009 but the weather was so much better. We had our Titanic moment on the Manly ferry first.
Then there was the postcard-worthy Opera house moment.
This year I am not sure what we will be doing but I know Mike is planning something so I am intrigued to find out what it is. I will also be calling friends and family and enjoying the celebrations through them. I am also planning a Norwegian flag manicure so we'll see how it works out.
What do you think of Seventeenth of May? If you are not from Australia, how does your country celebrate? Do you like the bunad?