Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Silver Anniversary

Today is the 25th wedding anniversary of one of our neighbors and the perfect time to explain another Danish tradition!

Last night the neighborhood was a frenzy of activity - kids running everywhere while the parents 'pretended' to drill holes in the neighbor's house. They didn't actually drill any holes but the idea is that you attempt to freak out the happy couple by pretending to destroy their house - or something.

By the time everyone went to bed, there was a beautiful 'gate of honor' at the couple's front door:

Between 6:30 and 7:00 am this morning, everyone gathered in the street in front of their house:

There was a trumpet and a flute to accompany what some would call singing...

The singing was sad. I'll give everyone credit for attempting a few tunes at this obscene hour of the morning, but let me tell you, they really needed a Ken Nelson (aka my dad), a man who can be heard miles away, to lead them in their songs. Instead, this singing sounded more like someone had woken a few mice and led them in a sad chorus. I kept thinking.. I thought this was supposed to be a happy occasion? When you have 40-50 people singing and you can still hear the flute... something is amiss! Perhaps by the time another couple on the street celebrates their 25th, I'll know the Danish better, and the tunes better, and I can attempt to lead them.

As the group started song #4, the happy couple appeared on the front stoop...

And when the singing ended, everyone was invited inside for breakfast.

While I love embracing new traditions, I must admit that to me, this ranks up there with the faulty concept of the danish birthday party. Hasn't anyone in Denmark figured out that when it's YOUR day, someone else is supposed to do all the work? The happy couple had transformed the inside of their house into a banquet hall with seating for all these people around 3 HUGE tables. I can only imagine where the tables and chairs came from - I hope they were borrowed and that it wasn't necessary to rent them or something!

Keep in mind, this was 7 am!! Which means, in order to serve breakfast to all these people, my poor neighbors were probably up at 5 am putting rolls in the oven, slicing cheese, setting out jars of marmalade, etc. I do hope that once everyone left they finally had some time alone to celebrate their anniversary!!

Note to the Danes... When Ole and I celebrate our 25th, please do come and sing to us, but, if it's not too much trouble, can you bring the breakfast with you? Oh, and some tables and chairs too? Thanks!!
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