Labour day in Belgium. The day nobody works. Or at least only a small part does.
This day is traditionally a day when people meet each other and enjoy the changes spring brings to nature. Before 2020, a lot of things were happening on May 1. Things that brought people together, such as fairs and happenings. Things that brought laughter and joy into our lives. This year, however, for the second time around, it is forbidden to meet each other, to enjoy the company of friends and family. Or more precisely, you can do that but under strict regulations. This so-called pandemic has altered our society in its very essence. Fun is no longer a part of it. Labour is.
So today, instead of meeting with friends we can no longer see, we went to Brussels, the capital of our country. Europe’s hell hole, as Trump used to say. How true his words turned out to be, but not in the meaning I used to think. A group of youngsters have been organizing a protest march each week by cycling trough a part of Brussels. They traditionally start in a forest, called Bois de la Cambre. This Forest has become the symbolic place of resistance against the oppressive government and the changes to our society they want to push through.
On April 1, Fools’ Day, a collective had made this joke about a number of dj’s that would come to this Forrest. To host a party: ‘la boum’, French for ‘the party’. Everybody knew that it was a joke and the dj’s on the playlist were from abroad. Everyone knew it was impossible, our borders are still closed. A lot of young people went to the Forrest anyway.