It’s that one day of the year where flowers, chocolates, champagne and cards pass hands in exchange of love across the World. Perhaps you think it’s pure commercial hype and refuse to jump on the bandwagon, or maybe you’re a romantic happy to empty your wallet for anything red, pink, fluffy or sweet.
In Britain we spend around £503 million on Valentine’s paraphernalia, traditionally sent anonymously. Who can remember sending cards at school and crossing every finger/ toe/ limb for one in return. If that wasn’t the case, you’d greet the girls holding red roses and a Milk Tray through gritted teeth (just me?)
Celebrated in many different forms across the globe, not everyone adheres to the stereotype box of chocolates or bottle of wine. The Welsh have St Dwynwen’s Day where the tradition of love spoons are given. In South Korea, women give chocolate to men and exactly a month later, men give non-chocolate candy to women (surely this is the wrong way around). In Latin American countries, it’s custom to give secret gifts in the style of Secret Santa. In Spain, it’s custom to exchange books (how very civilised.)
Everyone loves a superstition and Valentine’s Day offers some of the best. It was once said that the first man an unmarried woman saw on the 14th February would be her future husband (this morning it was the postman - lucky chap). It was also said if a woman saw a robin flying overhead on Valentine’s Day, she would marry a sailor, a sparrow: a poor man and a goldfinch: a rich person. I saw a seagull (a fisherman?)
No matter where you are in the World or how you feel about February 14th, embrace the one day where you can drink champagne, buy Love Hearts sweets, admire red roses and gorge on copious amounts of chocolate. And yes, it still counts if you buy all of these things for yourself.
“You have to love yourself before you can love another” has never rang so true.
Before I go, needed to share this with you all. Google marked Valentine's Day by installing a romantic doodle on its home page. Watch it for a guaranteed smile.
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As Marmite would say, ‘Spread the Love’.
Until next time...