March 8 was International Women's Day, or naistepäev. In Estonia it is known as an old Soviet holiday, but when I crossed over into Helsinki yesterday I saw that they still celebrate the holiday in the 16th republic, too, at least on paper.
As an American, I was unsure how much attention I should pay to this holiday. I mean we already celebrate Valentine's Day and Mother's Day, so why exactly was there a need for International Women's Day?
But the problem is that all the other Estonian women in our lives are married to Estonian guys who indulge them with sweets and flowers on naistepäev. And once you give women another holiday, can you really take it away? So the adult woman in my life got a new book and some flowers, while the smaller ladies in my life -- one aged 4 years, the other 8 months -- got a fairy sticker book and a box of baby teething cookies, respectively.
Another dilemma is that even though I know that naistepäev is a holiday and I participated in it, I still in my heart don't believe it is a real holiday. It's as if I told Epp that June 1 is 'St. Justin's Day' -- which it is -- and that I deserve a little something extra because, well, it would be against the spirit of St. Justin's Day not to buy me something in appreciation of all the hard work I put into being fair and just. She might even take me up on it, but it still would be lacking in the credibility department.