Spring returns again – we celebrate the national holiday of Lorenzburg

Dear citizens and friends of Lorenzburg,

We celebrate our little nation on the spring equinox every year, which means that the holiday falls on different dates. This year the holiday’s celebrations were planned for the 20th of March but the present Covid-19 situation forces us to cancel any official programs.

At this point we have been under siege by this virus for a year, and it’s still uncertain for how much longer we must put our dreams on hold and minimise contact with our loved ones. Many have been working from home and elected to refrain from simple pleasures and truly important things alike – all in the hope of protection themselves and others. One year seems long indeed but the spring shall return again; this is a hope we must dare hold on to!

Le Printemps Retournera – “Spring always returns” is the chosen motto for my role as Prince of the fairy tale nation of Lorenzburg. To me those words summarise the hope that even though the earth twists and turns, and although the world of the humans may keel over, the day will come when we suddenly discover the snowdrop buds in the flowerbeds. This is regardless if we have just come out on the other side of the cold and darkness of a normal winter, or if we have suffered through a whole year of canceled joys. Spring always returns – this I can promise with absolute confidence. Right there, in the middle of all the longing, the marred hopes and the stuffiness of too much couch-potatoing, all the the buds of nature start to burst. The mornings are a little brighter and one day we notice that the sunlight actually has some warmth in it.
And the warm feeling in the chest?
It’s the stirring of hope.

Easter is nigh but we are still in the lent period. And was there ever a better symbol for lent and fasting than Covid-19? The virus stands as a figurehead of all things lost and canceled, as well as a symbol of our own determination to renounce all those temptations that are normally safe but could now cause harm to ourselves or others.
Among all the things we have been forced to give up we shall remember those that were the hardest: the halted freedom that is the special privilege of the young, the canceled family trips, the postponed weddings, the called off christenings, the empty seats at the funerals of our loved ones. All of us have lost something priceless.

And still, in spite of all this, spring returns…
Perchance you think crocuses and snowdrops are sad excuses for a consolation prize for all  we have missed out on, but I would like to say this: be grateful for the little moments of solace.
The earth twists and turns, and the world of the humans may keel over, but the small joys of life are always there to remind us of the brighter morning that awaits on the other side of the darkness.

Lorenzburg is but a tiny nation, hidden amongst villas, semi-detached houses and pine trees. But one shouldn’t dismiss that which is small! In the fairytale The Princess and the Pea, it’s not the folks with the crowns who have the most important functions, no, it’s the seemingly insignificant little pea that drives the cogwheels of the narrative until everyone  reaches the other shore and lives happily ever after.
The pea is the primary symbol of Lorenzburg. The crowned pea on our banner reminds us of the power that lies in goodness: That which is small may defeat that which is big, and kindness may indeed overcome evil… …and the little joys, the tiny comforts, may take some of the weight off our shoulders if we but let them.

Our national day falls on the spring equinox, and this is no accident! Day and night are equally long but tomorrow a brighter day will dawn. Let us hold on to that promise for the months ahead. Let us hold on to the small things and trust in their power to drive the cogwheels of hope until we reach that day of “happily ever after”.

Your most devoted,
Frei P.

P.s. For a special meal on this day, try cooking Lorenzburg’s national dish the light and creamy soup called Crème Ninon

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