Thursday, May 01, 2014

May Day in Paris

Every year on or around May 1st, I remember being in Paris on this day, in the sprawling cemetery of Père Lachaise, quite a little while ago. I was quietly walking around among the cats and the tombs visiting various obelisks and markers for the departed -- in this case the one for Jim Morrison -- when loud noises broke out not far away. Sounded like firecrackers, whistles, bells, singing and honking all at once. Cats scattered among the grave stones and mausoleums. Small cars drove up the little lanes, bikes with horns, people in black and red carrying banners and placards, shouting and singing and generally carrying on excitedly. Of course! It was May Day in Paris, and anarchists were at play, at protest, in a rushing throng, aiming to wake the dead and rile up the living. 

It was all over in less than twenty minutes. Then, European-style sirens, a woosh of police, and the swirl was gone again. I'm not sure how the dead reacted, but it sure woke me up fast.

That's exactly why I always remember being in Paris on May Day.

Today's Rune: The Mystery Rune. 


the walking man said...

Americans can still learn from the Europeans about mass protests! It seems when we did do that over the decades of dissent from civil rights marches to anti war movements when we aged we caved to a gerrymandered system of let me get mine while the getting is good.

Charles Gramlich said...

Wake the dead eh? Maybe that's what ushers in the Zombie Apocalypse.