30th April is Valborg in Sweden, otherwise also known as Walpurgis Night. I honestly know very little about this day so I can only share whatever little knowledge I have. For one, I know that it is the birthday of Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden ie the King of Sweden. Happy Birthday Sir!
It is also a day when most students get drunk in Lund or Uppsala. They usually start the morning with a champagne breakfast and then they continue drinking throughout the day at the park. It happens to be one of the rare days in Sweden where you will not be caught for drinking in public. At night there would be a huge bonfire and then the students continue partying indoors at a club or someone’s house.
This is a throwback to our exchange students take on Valborg in Lund in 2012. I remember it being a really nice day to be out in the park and it was probably the first time I wore shorts in months. We had lots of food and drink, there was free ice cream (yay!), a very “festival vibe” with not so great DJs and lots of drunk Swedes. Sara and I managed to last from morning till night and then we caught the train back to Halmstad after the bonfire.
As I am not a student anymore, we had a more “suburban” experience of Valborg where we went to the lake near our place to see the bonfire. There was a mini carnival with performances on the main stage, stalls selling candy and food and play areas for kids. Based on what I read online, it is a celebration of Spring and an excuse for Swedes to make big fires, hahaha.
Definitely thought of Caity and Andrew when I saw this although the queue for this was really really long.
Typical Swedish carnival fare consists of candy (lots of it), popcorn, hot dogs and cotton candy. Almost all the kids there had a piece of candy in their hands. Some pasar malam food would have been really nice actually. Wouldn’t mind some cup corn or tapioca cakes or Taiwanese sausage….hahaha!
Finally the main reason why we were there was for this bonfire which was big in my opinion but Jens thought it was small. It was a little weird feeling super warm in the face but cold everywhere else.
It is okay if you still don’t get the point of the day at the end of this post because I don’t either. I would say that in order to celebrate this day right, you just need a nice pint of cold beer/cider and a big bonfire.