This year I finally donned a costume for Carnaval – I went to the presentation of the Chirigotas – and I even saw the Onion burn!
So lets start at the Chirigotas – These are traditional farcical presentations that apparently take pot shots at local figures, politicians and local custom and traditions. They were held last weekend in the Theatre . . . and I can say I was impressed. To be fair, I only understood 15% (at a stretch) of what was being said/sung – however, you couldn’t be anything but impressed with the ammount of time and effort that had been invested in the costuming, the rehearsals, the make-up and the staging.
Two things were striking – the depth of really amazing voices and a predilection of the Spanish male to dress in drag!
That being said there were some real knock out performances – from the choir of elves that live in our fabulous Gruta de Las Maravillas, to a selection of lycra and feather boas that would put the cast of Priscilla to shame.
I am now looking forward to the next fabulous year where I am hoping to be able to understand just a little bit more of the songs!
There are some days that just turn out right, and I have to say a couple of weekends ago, I was fortunate to have had four amazing couples in the house for three of those perfect days. Hailing from different countries, different backgrounds and speaking in foreign tongues – the differences become points of interest and common interests the glue.
Nights were spent by the fireplace over bottles of red wine . . which seemed to become all the more quaffable thanks to the amiable company; and once the wine was drunk it was down to the bar for a gin or two . . . maybe “uno mas”? the reply “venga vale”!.
Sunday morning we had the pleasure of really exploring the Sierras with our expert guides – their true love of the sierra and their enthusiasm for all things natural was contagious and we soon forgot that we were a week too early for the “good” mushrooms (that loosely translated means any that can be lovingly drowned in cream, garlic and butter or grilled with just a hint of extra virgin olive oil.) What we were introduced to was a way to explore and enjoy the other varieties of mushroom (that usually get trampled under foot as we chase after the perfect Boletus or Tana) and really study them for their own inherent beauty.
The only edible mushroom we found was clutching the side of a tree and resembled an ox tongue (thus its coloquial name – lengua de buey I guess) all mushy and gelatinous on the top and blood red . . . . . even I couldn’t imagine eating that . . . .
What we did find was wild berries and fables of how the Spanish army killed off the French army by setting traps in the food and lacing leftovers with known poisonous berries; fabulous lichens and moss of every color; serenity in the peaceful ambling through the chestnut forests as the leaves fell around us and fun . . . a lot of fun!
So from me to everyone who made that weekend so great – Cheers and lets to it again some time.