It’s a Leap Year! We have an extra day in February this year. Have you any special plans for that day? My favourite story is that February always had 29 days until Augustus Caeser stole a day from it and gave it to August, his namesake month. It’s a pity somebody didn’t steal a day or two from January. It was such a long month!
I hope you all marked St. Brigid’s Day. The story goes that St. Brigid made an agreement with St. Patrick that women would be allowed to propose to men on a leap day, supposedly to balance the traditional roles and men and women. Cheers to St Brigid, the first feminist, whose feast day was February 1st.
In many European countries, particularly in the upper classes, tradition dictated that any man who refused a woman’s proposal on February 29th had to buy her 12 pairs of gloves so that she could hide the embarrassment of not having an engagement ring. In Greece, it is considered unlucky to marry in a leap year, especially on a leap day.
In ancient Rome, Februus was the god of purification and every year they held a festival – Februa, during which people were ritually washed. Their minds and bodies purified in preparation for the year ahead. I think I’ll just stick to appreciating an extra day.
While this year we are preoccupied with the extra day, most people associate February with St. Valentine’s Day.
Why do we need a special day to show our affection for the one we love. surely that is something we should do every day? Not with cards and flowers but with simple gestures. A smile, a touch, a hug when it’s needed and when it’s not.
Hope you have a fabulous February.