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Fiestas The Spanish cities, towns and villages are famed for their fiestas Whole entire weekends of 24 hour partying. The bangs, the bands and the bu単uelos (donut like sweet treats devoured at 3am after a few drinks and a boogie). The locals love to party and embrace the fiestas full on. The same familes who went home (yes, kids too) at 4am are up in their best clothes at the 10am church service to honour the village Saint or virgen. The same family are then having a blast at the foam party and then eating paella in the town square. Come Sunday eyes are tired but the spirit is not as everyone knows it is soon Monday and the streets will be enveloped in silence and everyone can sleep for hours and hours. These fiestas have a special place in the hearts of locals. Something much deeper than the party and music. These fiestas are steeped in tradition and pride. They are the Sunday best of the village. They show what the village is made of. They show a community that has come together to put a party on that is worthy of a huge pat on the back. In the village where I live a group of villagers each year are nominated or they can volunteer to become mayordomos.A mayordomo is basically an organiser/helper. Each fiesta has its own group of mayordomos. Meetings, work and organisation begins almost a year before fiesta. Fund raising and dedication. Its a tough job and doesn't come with a pay check but its a fantastic way to understand the village and become involved in something wonderful. I have been a mayordomo a few times. Summer fiesta and two San Antons. The San Anton fiesta takes place in various places throughout Spain, normally during January. Im not religious but I love my village. I will work to make a fiesta a success. I have huge respect for the traditions and parades. I ventured out to help with the Saturday night procession. San Anton was being taken from the small church in the Ermita to the main church in the Plaza. We were early. It was cold so I sat on a bench in the beautiful little church and waited. San Anton was next to me. Surrounded by red carnations and ready for his tour of the village. I studied him and found a moment of sheer peace in amongst the bangs and noise of the band approaching. Our Mayor came in to make

sure everything was ready. He added a figure of a little pig at the feet of San Anton (the history of that pig is another story) and San Anton was raised up on the shoulders of men, young and old as the band awaited to accompany him to the Plaza. Normally the Mayor leads the procession. Not out of importance but more to ensure that the statue is heading in the right direction and looking out for low hanging wires, ect. This year two mayordomos were to oversee this job as Paco took a more discreet position behind San Anton. Myself and Rafa took our places and we got to enjoy a priveliged view of the procession that few get to see. I felt very blessed. I saw the faces of concentration and determination of the village men as they proudly maintained balance and strength. The eyes of older villagers who came to their doors to watch San Anton pass. Tears of emotion shining. Of the shouts of instructions as they managed to get round tight corners and duck under fiesta flags and wires. The sound of the band full on and the clang of the metal poles used to rest the saint on as the men rub their sore shoulders. I understood so much more that evening and will not forget the experience. Rafa told me I would enjoy it and he was right. I have walked along those streets for 13 years. To take my daughters to school, to get married, to go to the shop, meet friends and just live day to day but that was one of the best walks I have done on these village streets. viva San Anton! By Laura Campbell from Sedella

The Sentinella Magazine January 2016  

The Little Mag That Fits In Your Bag For Info On The Go!

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