The Foreign Residents in the TRNC (TFR)
Invitation to the
Norwegian National Day
By Ralph Kratzer
The advantage to live here in Cyprus as a foreigner, is not only the beauty of the island and the mostly good weather, but most of all to meet many people from different countries of origin and thus the possibility to discover different cultures.
Last Saturday I was invited by Tommy Rognmo, member of the TFR board, to the Norwegian National Day, which this year marked its 200th anniversary.
What does this day mean to the Norwegians? Wikipedia says:
Norwegian Constitution Day is the National Day of Norway and is an official national holiday observed on May 17 each year. Among Norwegians, the day is referred to simply as syttende mai (meaning May Seventeenth), Nasjonaldagen (The National Day) or Grunnlovsdagen (The Constitution Day), although the latter is less frequent.
The Constitution of Norway was signed at Eidsvoll on May 17 in the year 1814. The constitution declared Norway to be an independent kingdom in an attempt to avoid being ceded to Sweden after Denmark–Norway’s devastating defeat in the Napoleonic Wars.
The celebration of this day began spontaneously among students and others from early on. However, Norway was at that time in a union with Sweden (following the Convention of Moss in August 1814) and for some years the King of Sweden and Norway was reluctant to allow the celebrations. For a few years during the 1820s, King Karl Johan actually banned it, believing that celebrations like this were in fact a kind of protest and disregard — even revolt — against the union. The king’s attitude changed after the Battle of the Square in 1829, an incident which resulted in such a commotion that the king had to allow commemorations on the day……
Enough historical facts (read more by clicking here), back to the party at Tommy´s.
As always with his invitations before, this feast was organized perfectly. Each of the invited guests brought something to drink, for the rest the host took care. There was plenty of delicious food at the buffet, singing performances (the Norwegian love singing!), good background music, a witty speech and plenty of entertainment and chats among the guests.
Later on a raffle was started in aid of the Karmi cemetery renovation project and all the participants of the party gave their donations.
The atmosphere was excellent and that, in the next morning, I had a slight hangover and could not comply with the invitation to a biker festival in Nicosia, is definitely not the fault of the host, but entirely mine!
My thanks to Tommy Rognmo and all those who have helped him to organize this festival.
I ‘m looking forward to the next one!