May Day and Kindness

Woman with Wreath of Flowers in Her Hands“The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.” ― Oscar Wilde

May 1st is May Day.  This holiday is celebrated differently all over the world.  Many people now think of May Day as International Workers Day and there are demonstrations scheduled in larger cities with marches.  But as a child in the northwest, there was a different tradition we partook in on May Day and it was the act of kindness.

The week before May 1st friends and family would gather to make May Day Baskets.  These baskets would consist of planted flowers in pots, small bouquets of flowers or flowers in a bag.  On May Day we would gather our May Day baskets and leave them anonymously on our friends and neighbors door steps or hang them on their door knobs.  Then we would knock on the doorbell and walk away from the door.  When the door was opened we would say, “Happy May Day!”

As I reminded of this tradition approaching, I think of how nice it was to spread kindness and happiness to people around me.  It only took a small amount of time and effort but it was not an insignificant gesture to the people who received them.  It was apparent in the surprise on their face.

Happy May Day and enjoy all the beauty around you that spring brings.


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