I recently had the opportunity to attend the local fiesta at the village in Spain where I was staying with some friends (always try to cultivate friends in exotic places, it makes for a much
cheaper more pleasurable holiday).
I’ve not been to a fiesta before, so I was really looking forward to this. Despite the village being quite small, they still pull out all the stops at make it a fun event. As with most things in Spain, all the action happens at night; although, curiously, they set all the fireworks off during the day. It seems that the Spanish aren’t that bothered about pretty displays in the sky; they just want loud noises.
The fiesta itself lasted for five days, but we just went down for the Saturday entertainment. The village square was devoted to a huge stage for the band (they called it an ‘orchestra’, but it was a band) and a couple of large temporary bars. Another large eating and drinking area was set up about a hundred yards away, next to a funfair, and the streets were festooned with lights.
We wandered down as twilight started to fall, along almost deserted streets, occupied only by a few families who had set their chairs up on the pavement, it being a bit cooler than staying indoors.
The square was starting to fill up as we arrived, so we bagged a table and ordered the first round of cervezas whilst waiting for the entertainment to start. We had seen the timetable, but this was Spain — it happens when it happens.
First off were the flamenco dancers. Flamenco seems to me to be a very angry dance form — it’s full of exaggerated gestures, stamping and lots of flouncing. I love it.
There was then a delay while they set things up for the band, so we went for a wander to see what else was on offer. Children were well catered for, with an extensive fun fair including a pony roundabout. It made me wish I was smaller.
Food and drink were everywhere — people were obviously taking their obligation to consume as much of it as possible very seriously — children were running around from ride to ride and everyone was just enjoying the perfect night.
The band came on and treated us to a medley of film themes, accompanied by dancers acting out the films — The Matrix, Star Wars, Titanic, Ghostbusters. It was all superbly organised and performed, and if there were a few glitches — well, that happens, doesn’t it?
Being wimpy Brits, we retired to our beds at about 1 o’clock, but the locals were still there at 6.
What a great place — I’ll definitely be back.