Happy International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day, at least here in Italy, or as we say in Italy – Feste delle Donne…And what a grand concept. A whole day dedicated to WOMEN…hmmm…

Apparently, In ancient Roman times, March 8 was one of the first of the springtime fests and a day that was sacred to Ariadne, whom Theseus had abandoned on the Island of Naxos after promising to marry her if she helped him slay her father’s pet Minotaur. Poor, poor Ariadne, seduced and abandoned, became a prototype for ancient Mediterranean womanhood. She later married Bacchus, but that was a whole new adventure.

However…in 1945 when “the powers that be” chose the date of March 8, they weren’ t thinking of Ariadne. In fact they were memorializing two events outside of Italy: a March 8, 1857, strike by women garment workers in New York (GO USA! Rah Rah!!), which led to the formation two years later of the first women’s union in the United States, and a strike by Russian women calling for “bread and peace” on March 8, 1917. Whew – that is better…I would so hate for “Our Day” to be dedicated to a poor ole lass who was left at the alter…or in the labyrinth…I can’t remember…

Anyway, on this day, men give the women in their lives sprigs of bright yellow Mimosa flowers. Women can also give them to each other. I didn’t get any mimosa flowers today. And, I was bummed. But – Peppe’s dad tried to buy me some pastries for the celebration (he seizes the opportunity to buy pastries every-chance-he-gets…), and Peppe offered to buy me something new for my bedroom…so, I guess I still came out on top!

Also on this day, and apparently in southern Italy, only on this day, the women head out in groups, men-less, for some good old-fashioned female fun. But, seeing how I am surrounded by as much testosterone as a WWF wrestler on Super Bowl Sunday – I am staying in. I do, however, plan on celebrating this weekend. My internet pals Sognatrice and Aurora are trainin’ it on over to Catanzaro and we are going to celebrate International Women’s Day American-style…I can hardly wait.

So, to all of my female friends – near and far, personal and virtual, Happy International Women’s Day…
10 Responses
  1. Ambra Celeste

    Happy festa delle donne to you too, Bella! Why isn’t it celebrated in the US the way it is here? I had to move here before I even heard of it. And doesn’t it seem like there are way more holidays here than back home? Anyway, I hope you had a lovely day, and enjoyed your pastries! Ciao

  2. j

    Happy belated festa della donne! They don’t do it up much here in Cleveland, in fact I’m not sure I’ve heard of it, but I think it’s a grand idea. I love women and think you/they should all be celebrated, especially the ones in my life.

    It sounds like you guys are going to have fun. But I’m not sure about celebrating it American style (since they don’t). Why not try the way they did it in the cult of Ariadne which consisted of a ceremonial dance, orgiastic rites and some lamentations? Anyway raise a glass for me and let us know how it goes.

  3. Virtual Woman's Day

    Thanks for the post – I subscribe to Google alerts and got the notice about your post today – I wanted to invite you to an event we are hosting in celebration of Women’s History Month.

    It is Virtual Woman’s Day™ and you can read more about it at http://virtualwomansday.blogspot.com/.

    Have a great day… and then some.


    Heidi Richards, Founder & CEO – The WECAI Network™
    http://www.WECAI.org – “Helping Women Do Business on and off the WEB™”
    Join women around the globe making history during Virtual Woman’s Day™
    Thursday, March 15, 2007 – http://www.virtualwomansday.com

  4. Kathy

    I found you with the Blog Party – glad to have met you, and I’ll be checking back with you. a late happy women’s day to you too!

  5. Mama C

    Happy festa delle donne to you! What a great day to celebrate! Leave it to the Italians to think of something that celebrates womanhood.

    Ariadne was left, sleeping, on the island of Naxos when Theseus was on his way home. He got his, though. He forgot to hoist his white victory sails so his dad threw himself off a cliff. Hence, the Aegean Sea. Lovely story, huh?

  6. Cherrye

    Katerinafiore – welcome back! good to see you.


    Ladies…auguri to you , too…

    J – thanks 🙂

    Mama C – very interesting..thanks for the lesson.

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