I’ve come to the conclusion that I really don’t like Easter at all.

It is the first holiday after winter and people are desperate to get out of the house and “enjoy” themselves, whatever they mean by that. Cue – motorways turned into car-parks.

Of course it is also the longest public holiday of the year, if you work for an organisation that still reflects the Christian festivals and gives you Good Friday off. That, I suspect is the key to my deep dislike for this holiday.
I was brought up as a Roman Catholic, so Easter was Ash Wednesday, the long drag of Lent, the deep gloom of the Good Friday service, followed by the Easter Sunday ritual of new hat and coat for church, Sunday Mass, and an orgy of chocolate consumption. I think being brought up in a deeply religious household has made me very aware of what it means to follow a faith and consequently very intolerant of those who pay lip service to it.
Now I’m an atheist and follow my own moral code, but I get really annoyed with the trend in this country for “paper Christians”, i.e. those who are “Christians” for births, deaths, marriage and the census, but don’t cross the church porch at any other time. They are often the first to rant at the values of those who follow other beliefs.
Of course, there is one other major thing I hold against Easter: it was during Easter that my father was dying, 12 years ago, and although the dates change, the association with the holiday remains.

So, I won’t be sitting in a traffic jam, and I won’t be stuffing myself with chocolate. I’ll do a bit of gardening, go and see friends, and wonder how many people who claim to be Christians and say Britain is a Christian country will go to a service on Sunday.

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