Regular readers of this blog (yes, both of you, my dears!), will know that Friday is… go on, say it… yes! Friday is Omelette Day! On Fridays I go down to meet Tigger at work and we pop round the corner to the friendly cafe for a lunch of Spanish Omelette, Italian style, something we look forward to throughout the week.
Or rather, it would be Omelette Day in any other week of the year but the In-Between Time: our lovely cafe is closed until after New Year.
Instead, we shall have to prospect for an alternative as we did yesterday. It’s not hard to find places open, just a nuisance to have to seek them out. Not that I begrudge the cafe owners their holiday. Not at all. In fact, I think they deserve their break because they work hard all year, providing an honest and friendly service.
When I went out yesterday, there was a strange feeling to the city. I took the bus and it sped through the streets with unaccustomed ease: there was so little traffic about. Around the Bank of England, the atmosphere was more like a Sunday than a Thursday. Many shops and eateries were closed but plenty were open. There seemed to be no pattern to it, all doing whatever they thought best. This is good, of course, and in principle I welcome it.
In arguing about whether Christmas should be a religious or secular festival, we tend to forget that there are other religious festivals much closer to hand. In fact, every day is a religious festival. I mean that literally: each day of the week celebrates a deity and can therefore be considered a religious festival.
Take Friday, for example. What is special about Friday? Well, it is named after my cat, Freya. OK, it isn’t really. Both she and the day were named after the goddess Freya, also known as Frigg or Frigga. She was a rather nice goddess as goddesses go, the patron of love and fertility. She rode in a chariot drawn by a pair of cats. The Romans, who liked always to equate the local gods of conquered territories with the appropriate Roman deities, naturally saw her as Venus, the goddess of love, and named the day Dies Veneris, “Day of Venus”, which lives on in French and Spanish as vendredi and viernes, respectively.*
For us, though, Friday is Omelette Day. Or rather, it isn’t; not this week. Perhaps that’s a good thing. Do they not say that you don’t know what you have until you lose it? Well, maybe. Next week’s omelette, eaten in the good company of the cafe staff will seem especially succulent. Mmm, looking forward to it already!
*For an explanation of the names of the other days of the week, there is a useful article here.