Carnaval 2010!!





The Five Senses
of Cadiz
during
Carnaval

First of all, there is no sense being had at all. it’s a locura; a craziness full of color, tradition and chaos. Yet, somehow, it’s organized in a Spanish way, no one gets hurt and it processes along as smooth as can be.

SIGHT:
Well everything we did see and everything we didn’t see was a colorful mess of magic. On Saturday we went down to one of the big avenida to see what all the fuss was about. There were people everywhere, street food, packages of nuts, popcorn, etc. and of COURSE every hand had a drink in it. We saw the beginning of the crazy costumes, which just grew and got crazier all weekend and even just the GLIMPSE of those made us squeal in kiddish delight.
We stood around, sippin on little bottles of champagne and people watching on the crowded street. Then these big decked out trucks started to SLOWLY (of course) pass by. They were full of adults dressed up and singing. They’re called Chirigotas. They are a Carnaval special. They are sippin’ wine, beer, or even full bottles of Sherry or Rum. They’re dressed up all crazy and interacting with the crowd. Of course they were moving so slow, that in 3 hours only 4 of them passed by. Of course Lily Jones had to end up ON a few of them, stretched out, being held up by dressed up singing men, pretending she knew the words, facing the crowd, her friends, and smilin’ so big her mouth hurt.
The streets were filled with people of all ages. Didn’t matter if you had gray hair, or were being pushed in a stroller, were a brand new infant, a thrice married aunt, a young teenager with your “pants on the ground”, or an ol’ geezer, everyone was there. It was quite the collection of humans.
On Saturday night, after a lil’ siesta, We got to see what we all were going to sparkle and shine as. Our group of amigos congregated here at our flat and got ready ourselves. What we were getting ready for we weren’t sure, but whatever we were doing we were going to do it in style! So we painted ourselves up and down and sideways. One girl from New York was a Picasso painting and was covered in blue squares, there was a Cleopatra which I helped do her make up, which ended up pretty amazing if you ask me, and there was a cutey lil’ fairy among us. There was a group of three lovely Royal Blue peacocks, a pirate, a somethin’ or other, a bumble bee, and me. I was Miss Krazy. I didn’t want to spend a bunch of money, but still do something funky. So, I bought a light blue wig, and totally rocked it out. I wore fishnets with ‘diamond’ studs down the back, a long blue shirt, some boots, funky glasses, and had the strangest make up. What people saw when they looked at ME, was a hot blue mess basically.
Unfortunately, the sight of all this craziness wasn’t recorded by me ,because my camera and two memory cards are BOTH entirely full. I can’t take some off and load ’em on to my computer because my computer is TOTALLY full too! Man my life is just too full! ha ha. My belly sure is anyhow. Anyways, so before I can record in a tangible way I need to invest in some more memory cards. My memory isn’t bad, but its hard to upload it onto facebook. :p

I can barely see the screen on my computer. It has to be folded down about way, so pretty much I only write when it’s an absolute must. It’s quite annoying and scary since it’s a computer issue and Lily Jones isn’t the best with computers. So that’s been fun.


The parade on Sunday was an absolute blast! It was SUPER colorful, VERY interactive and unique. It started late as usual, and by the end EVERYONE was covered in confetti. It was coming off of every float. My favorite float was the tribute to Michael Jackson, which included a group of Thriller dancers AND white/black ones dancing to the music. There were circus people, CRAZY costumes, which entire families get into, half-naked people, a mariachi band, go-go dancers, princesses, fairies, fun hippy drummers, etc. And every single kid on the street, whether they were in the parade or not, and about 77% of the rest of the people were dressed up! It was really cool.

SMELL:

By mid-evening Saturday night the streets downtown began to smell like urine. Some said urine, some said booze, sweat and people, but to me it was more like a barn. Well, it was like being around herds of cattle or actually on a farm. The small secluded city of Cadiz was the barn fence and the drunk pirates, Egyptians, air traffic controllers, nasa employees, drops of rain, bulls, cubes of blue, famous people, cows, babies (what is this incessant craze for older men to dress up as babies? They do it ALL over the world, and think it’s so terribly funny and cute. NOT the most attractive look if you ask me), and all the rest of the crazies were what fabricated the barnyard animals.

The Red Roses, which came from Puerto de Santa Maria, smelled and still continue to do so. They’re like a lil’ summer in a jar and placed on an entryway table so the first thing people see when they come into our flat is a lil’ happy burst of red petals.
The Red Roses were a special delivery for Liliana Ho-ness (It’s not that I’m a ho, it’s how some of the Spanish people pronounce JONES.) They came as a COMPLETE surprise and from a very special someone. They pretty much made my life. Definitely made my day, week, month and year so far…..:)


Of course the smell of ham permeates every which way.

It smells of rain and wet cement.

Fried fish isn’t a terrible smell, it’s kind of cozy, plus it makes your mouth water.


This morning my friend said our apartment smelled like pizza

HEARING:
Babies crying and parents shouting.
Music blaring and bands trumpeting.
People shouting and horns honking.
Techno music and girls laughing.
Annoying baby toys that go “honk, boink, zonk” (or whatever that sound was).
There was lots of fun singing. The Chirigotas crazy words and voices! They’re very colloquial, and have triple meaning of words. They sing about politics, culture, and everyday life, but sometimes they’re so dang complicated even the locals don’t get them.

I can hear the music on my iPod again after purchasing the FOURTH pair of headphones, since I’ve moved to Spain. Oh, how I miss the quality of things in the U.S.


TASTE:
Question? What is gritty, slimy like snot, tastes like the sea and comes out of a sea like porcupine shell?
Answer – a sea urchin/anemone.
They are gross.

We tasted the sweet goodness of very classy Mimosas in mini bottles of champagne with a drop of orange juice on the top, wine, beer, gin, juice, beer, gin, vodka, wine, etc………..

The more adventurous ladies tried crab, and fried fish and seafood, which they put into a paper folded into a cone shape. Interesting…never had a paper cone full of fried fishies, but hey it was interesting.

I taste the sweet goodness of freedom and life every morning.

TOUCH:

Well for starters, I felt the floor while I was bouncing around in the splits at a discoteca. Why? Who knows. Anyhow, I felt and saw the battle field on my knees the next morning. I felt the floor when I fell on my behind as well. We were the only ones there, and it was quite fun.

We got our fair share of paper streamers and confetti to launch back at the kinetic crowd of costumes.

And I cannot even count the number of lives I’ve been touching with my time here in Spain….:p

I definitely felt the cold water on my head this morning while leaning over the tub to wash my hair. I think for being a “developed country”, they could just go right on ahead and develop some heaters and hot water heaters right on into our flat. Tanks of gas that go out whenever they want, and antique machines latched on to the wall where you have to have a special magic touch to get the flame on kind of went out of style WHEN THE WHEEL WAS INVENTED!!

We definitely have been feeling rain drops and wind chills for days now. However, for the time being, the sun has sporadically come back in to our lives. It really is quite funny how one little sliver of a sunbeam can change your entire demeanor and just brighten up your life 😉

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