How we celebrate International Workers’ Day (Labour Day)

A man is roasting a pork.


Usually Labor day is associated with unions protesting against oppression, or at least with sending strong message by employees to employers that they are organized in claiming their rights guaranteed by the law. You might think that in Serbia, as former socialism country, this tradition is even stronger and more rooted in worker’s essence. No, nothing like that. For average working person in Serbia May 1st is opportunity to spend some time in the nature with friends, preparing barbeque in the open and soaking it in large quantities of alcohol. How come, you would ask? Well, earlier mentioned socialism is cause for this tradition, because during 50 years of socialism, workers had no employer but themselves, in Yugoslavian model of socialism workers were their own bosses, so if you are your own boss how can you protest against yourself? In that case, what is there else to do than to praise work and hard labor with eating, drinking and partying in the open?

Graphite of worker how he is typing a worker's motto

There was a joke when I was a kid, it went something like this: Who is afraid of unions in America? -Employers, who is afraid of unions in USSR? –Workers and who is afraid of unions in Yugoslavia? –pigs and lambs. This is probably the most exact union’s description in former Yugoslavia, and the situation is not much different in today’s Serbia.

Man is roasting a pork.

As traditional members of Serbian society we are practicing the same tradition, so for last two years we were in Mošorin at country house of our friend Dragana (we have already written about her center of earth architecture) with at least 20 other hardworking people who gathered there to support worker’s rights. Even though we express explicit points of view the atmosphere is relaxed, so if you like to cook you can be a chef, if you like to be active you can play badminton, or you can bowl. If none of those activities is your cup of tea, you can just be lying down in hammock. Well, it’s not easy to protect your rights.

Group of people are bowling on the grass.

This year it’s different, because the Orthodox Easter falls on May 1st, so this year it is festive and family oriented, because it’s Easter in the forefront, but we’ll do our best not to discontinue the tradition and not to betray old socialism heritage of BBQing in the open, in some picturesque part of our God given nature.

Easter egg with symbol of labour day and food on the table

Stay tuned…

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