Smurfs+ Froggers + Confetti =
Thursday, August 16th- In the center of it all in the village of Cortes de la Frontera:
We all bounded down the village streets weaving between the massive numbers of Spaniards with an unbelievable aura surrounding us. The night was illuminated with lanterns that crisscrossed above us, music that pounded throughout our body and the smells of street tapas and fair food lingering in the thickness of the nights air.
We had been planning it for weeks with our counterparts in crime, Rachael and Adam. We began the evening up outside their yurt with mojitos, burgers on the grill and banjo tunes—and then would ‘take it to the streets’ later that evening. You see, here in Spain, a festival truly doesn’t kick-off until after 9. Well—in actuality, nothing really starts happening until late into cool darkness of the night. You could walk through a Spanish village during the day and think it had been abandoned, but by nightfall- the streets are littered with children and passionate conversations. You cannot help but be entranced by this culture and their unique nighttime dynamic and rituals. ….and we were ready to jump right in—inhaling the confetti, and all.
The night began with the annual procession down the main street in the village. We cheered on as it mimicked the age old parade-like traditions of marching bands, creepy clowns and walking massive paper-mache heads. And then, we looked up in utter disbelief. I may have even blinked a few times to make sure what I was seeing was ‘for realz.’ Right before us with pop music bouncing off the razor cuts of white village roofs was a float pulled by a tractor with a dozen Spaniards dressed as Smurfs rocketing out confetti.
Although we had no time to ‘ponder’ as we stepped literally right ‘on the bandwagon’ and made ourselves a part of the parade. We all danced down the street behind the smurfs-in-tow demanding more confetti…. more heart thumping music…. we wanted to get ‘stuck in.’
SIDENOTE: Interestingly enough we did learn later that the part of the recent ‘SMURF MOVIE’ was actually filmed in this area. Hence their proudness of these little blue guys and their float-tasticness. The small town of Juzcar was in fact, painted entirely blue— as they were promised that everything would be painted right back to the dazzling WHITE of the Spanish villages that literally spill out from the mountainsides in Andalucía. However, it seems that the people of the village actually wanted to keep it BLUE as not only were they now known throughout the world, BUT it increased happiness. I think we all yearn for a little color in our lives. Sometimes, it can make all the difference.
As the confetti ran dry we instinctively craved more and our attention turned towards the fair rides for another adrenaline rush. We had heard about this so-called ‘FROGGER’ thrill ride and as we ran up to stand in line with our 2 euro fifty we realized we were the first to jump in it that night. Having no idea WHAT it did, we were immediately at its mercy in its big bucket seats—eyes wide and animated.
And then this happened:
Can I just note that this ride lasted for at LEAST several minutes. Have you EVER been on a ride that last this long? ….. AND ever-so close to someones balcony. Imagine? …..Only in Spain.
And if I couldn’t fall in love with Feria anymore— we found ourselves ending the night in the town square dancing no more then with ourselves and some lingering house music in the background (and a few old men that I swept up from their seats). After our whirl-wind feria winding to a close into the wee’ hours of the morning, I couldn’t imagine the night ending. In fact, Rachael, Adam and Ray literally had to tug me away….. But the memories we created that night; the laughter we shrieked out and the confetti we inhaled will last forever (its actually quite surreal coughing up little colored pieces of paper).
Plus, we got the pictures to prove it: