London 14 Feb (BAN/SL) Roses are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet, and so are you…its a children’s rhyme I grew up with but associated it to Valentines day through out my life. I heard my dad saying it to my mum, friend’s saying it to their boyfriends. It was written on cards, sang in songs and sent as love messages to show affection.
St Valentines Day or as we know it today Valentine’s day, a day we show our loved ones how much we love them by sending cards, flowers, chocolates with a message of love. It is an annual festival celebrated on 14th February around the world, to celebrate romantic, friendship and admiration.
Originally the day gets its name from a famous saint, the popular belief about St Valentines day is that there was a priest from Rome in the third century AD.
The story goes…Emperor Claudius II believed married men were bad soldiers and therefore he banned marriages. Valentine thought this was unfair, and so he broke the rules and got people married in secret. When Valentines was caught by Claudius for betraying his rules, he was thrown in jail and sentenced to death.
At the prison he fell in love with the prison keeper’s daughter and on the day he was taken to his death sentence on 14th February, he sent her a love letter signed ‘from your Valentine’.
Modern day Valentine’s Day
Different cultures and traditions around the world celebrate Valentine’s day in various different ways. Some celebrate it showing affection for family love and children and some celebrate it romantically as couples.
Flowers and chocolates are typically sent, back in the day they use to make cards by hand, with cupids and hearts, decorated with intricate lace with message of love for the recipient. Today the tradition still lives, couple also go for dinners to celebrate and give presents to each other to symbolise their love.
Jewellery brands have special collections to mark the day, chocolatier’s have special ranges and restaurants have special menus.
Today in the UK as we celebrate Valentines day during a 3rd Lockdown. Loved ones send flowers for door step deliveries and virtual zoom sessions to share some time together. Grandchildren FaceTime and zoom their grandparents and send roses to show affection with messages of love. Families order in special menu meals prepared especially for Valentines day and couples send roses and chocolates with flowers to their partners. A tough year it had been but the we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
We can take this day as a opportunity to show our frontline workers and NHS workers our love and thanks.
“Frontline workers and our NHS staff thank you and we love you for all your dedication through this unprecedented time”
By Sushma Lobo