Happy Easter – I Think.

Easter postcard circa early 20th century

Easter postcard circa early 20th century (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Spring has just started and we of course will have Easter in a couple of days. For many people this is an important religious occasion but the idea of a spring celebration of some sort has been with us since ancient times.

Many places in Europe have a bonfire night at some point during the spring, the idea being that lots of light will chase away the darkness and usher in the longer days more quickly.

Down through the ages and across many cultures there has been an emphasis on rebirth and growth and rejuvenation and young, fluffy animals and, of course, on eggs  – those classic symbols of birth and new life.

It’s fun to get together with family or friends to have a few egg fights (with the hard boiled ones, not the raw ones!) to find out which egg will be the “champion.”

As a child I really enjoyed Easter. The whole Easter egg hunt bit was a lot of fun.

I grew up with roasted lamb and roasted salmon at Easter and we often finished off the last of the frozen or canned produce from my mother’s garden from the previous year.

Now, of course, we can get almost anything that we want at any time of year, day or night, as long as we are willing to pay the price. Strawberries from New Zealand during December. Quinoa from South America, a product my parents had never heard of. Wine from South Africa. “On demand” movies at three a.m.

There is, of course, the argument that we should be more cognizant of “eating locally” or should attempt to follow the “Hundred Mile Diet.” The global food industry is seriously contributing to greenhouse gas emissions and our desire for exotic products like quinoa is harming accessibility to the indigenous peoples for whom it is a basic foodstuff.

Despite these arguments, though, I have to say that I’m simply nostalgic for the times when we actually had “food seasons.” Of course, I ranted about a related topic in one of my Christmas posts which you can read here.

Easter eggs // Ostereier

Easter eggs // Ostereier (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Nevertheless, I got rather annoyed when I saw the chocolate eggs gracing the store shelves back in January. They were literally competing with the chocolate valentines. I commented on this to one of the store employees who said that they had no choice but to put them out because they were shipped to them and couldn’t sit in storage. She told me that she had heard the same complaint from other customers, a response that may or may not have been true.

The fact is, there’s nothing special about it any more.  Many of us have access to so much plenty that we have no appreciation for where it comes from or for what it takes to land in our stores. We have everything we could possibly want and our expectations keep escalating. A few days ago I watched a teenager of about 14 deliberately damaging her iPhone. She then bragged to the people she was sitting with that it was okay because her parents would get her a new one.

Our desire for whatever we want, when we want it, is inflicting hardship on those with less means. It is causing environmental damage.

We’re fat. We’re complacent.

When I was a kid, I could tell what month it was from what was available in stores and even in my own back yard.

I think it’s Easter. But frankly, given what’s on the store shelves, it could be August. And that’s a little sad.

So, in this season of rebirth and growth, we might want to consider doing a little “growing” ourselves by keeping an eye on where items are coming from. To perhaps buy “locally” more often. To be a little less demanding and a little less entitled. To be a little more in control of our basic narcissism.

To be a little more considerate.

And that’s never a bad thing.

13 thoughts on “Happy Easter – I Think.

  1. Well ranted! We too have had chocolate eggs since Christmas as well as hot cross buns – once upon a time only to be eaten on Good Friday. Nothing is special these days, or prized and that is a tragedy not only for us but more so for our children, who will never experience the thrill of receiving a tangerine at Christmas or the first sweet strawberry, picked in early June. I’m getting quite nostalgic just thinking about it!

  2. I hear you about easter eggs in January. our stores had flip flops on the shelves around the same time too. sad how retail spoils the current season by racing ahead to stock the next. thanks – enjoyed and agree with your rant.

    • Thanks, Lori. I actually don’t know how people can do it – get into the idea of buying flip flops in January – the only thing I’m thinking about right then is will my mitts make it through February or will I need to get a new pair – and they won’t be available any more!

  3. I hear you honey. Our stores are the same, we had hot cross buns in late January, we have winter clothes before summer has finished or Autumn has started, we have produce that is ripened by quickening processes. Everything is too much too soon and that sadly goes for the younger generation (the phone for example) Back in my day.. 😦 who you bought your 1st home, you had sheets on the windows and borrowed furniture, seconds, hand me downs off relatives. Sadly no longer they have everything new straight off the bat and end up putting themselves in debt to show everyone they ‘have it all’. The Gen Y want it and want it now..the days for wanting or saving for special things is long gone, it’s a case of look at me.. 😦 Great Post. x

    • Yes, I agree completely. I started that way, too. Lots of used or second-hand stuff, borrowed stuff. The Gen Y would consider the notion of doing that absolutely crazy. And yes, they are running up an enormous amount of debt – our government is trying to rein them in by making it more difficult to get mortgage loans but it may be too late. Anyway, Happy Easter, Rambly! 🙂

  4. You are so right about the lack of seasonality. It is rather frustrating to see goods brought so far forward from the actual date of the event. We try to buy things local as well. We frequent the local farmer’s market and get the produce as soon as the farmers and orchardists have it picked. I buy my milk from a dairy that is a family run operation. I think it tastes better but even if it’s my imagination I don’t care. It just feels right. Great post Lynette. Happy Easter! 🙂

    • I think that it has to be better – it hasn’t been shipped half-way around the world or treated with the quickening processes that Ramblings mentions. It’s nice to see too, that the farmers’ markets are becoming more popular. Anyway, whether it’s just in my head or not, I agree that the fresh farmers’ produce tastes better. Thanks for your comments and you have a happy Easter, too! 🙂

  5. I really loved this piece. It definitely seems that our culture has forgotten that anticipation is the greater part of enjoyment.

    I remember being about 9 years old and saving up chore money to buy my first self-chosen piece of clothing. It was a skirt with sunflowers printed on it, and I worked especially hard so I could buy it before summer ended and the store rotated it out for the season. I still smile when I see myself wearing it in my school photo from that year. 🙂

    • Thank you for your comments! 🙂

      We really don’t anticipate much of anything any more, do we? Cute story. Working, saving and waiting to buy that something special also seems to be a thing of the past.

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