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Muttertag - Mothers Day

German postage stamp, 1957

Mothers Day is celebrated on the second Sunday in May. The movement started in the US in 1907. In Germany it was introduced in the 1920s, initiated neither by women's rights nor charity or whatever organizations but - by the association of flower merchants, who expected big business. In the beginning the holiday used to be entirely unpolitical. This changed in the Third Reich when it was turned into an instrument of Nazi ideology.

Nowadays, Mothers Day means big business for flower shops, perfumeries and restaurants. Kindergarten and primary scools will let the kids make cards, paintings or other little gifts for their mothers. On the day itself, the basic idea is dad and the kids spoling their mums and doing all the housework for her. In practice, the kids make breakfast and mum has to clean up the mess they created in the kitchen afterwards... Then the family sets out for a day trip and lunch at a restaurant.

Grown-up "children" will take their mothers for lunch, dinner, and/or a day out. In old people's homes, being left behind without anyone coming to visit is the worst that could happen to a female inmate.

Expect restaurants to be very crowded on that day.

On the other hand, there are mothers who object against this tradition because they find it silly - all the fuss about one day, and the rest of the year no one cares. They would rather have a tiny bit of appreciation now and then throughout the year than one big day.

Posted by Kathrin_E 11:06 Archived in Germany Tagged germany holidays traditions customs

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