Wednesday, 2 May 2012

May Day

This is probably something that will horrify yer average American but Cyprus remains one of the countries where it is considered perfectly normal and socially acceptable to be left-wing and to call yourself a Socialist and, hold your frothing mouth Mr Romney, even to be a Communist! Yep, the President is a democratically elected Communist. He leads a coalition government, and has cordial relations with both America and Russia. Cyprus remains a market economy, however. You try and stop a Cypriot from being enterprising!
Any road up, May Day is a Bank Holiday and the left-wing parties and the Trade Unions all get together for parades and speeches. The parades feature marching bands of drums with the occasional bugle - each Union and/or area having its own band. At the end of the parade, the Union leaders give speeches which, unfortunately, tend to go on a bit. The Brothers have yet to learn that four minutes hitting the spot is better than fifteen minutes of circumlocutory diatribe. Be that as it may, the lads have pointed out that The Struggle continues and that capitalism doesn't seem to be working all that well either.
Here's a couple of minutes of slide show of yesterday's activities in Larnaca. Note the lad with duct tape on his bass drum, a typically Cypriot approach to problem-solving, and the old lags in their red shirts. An aspect I liked was how relaxed everyone was and the way the crowd applauded the marchers. No police were on duty and the Union stewards took a laid back approach.

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