Blogs in this series

Life in Culebrón is a disconnected series of pieces about the banal and ordinary of everyday life in an inland Alicante village seen from my very British perspective.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Time passes

I was wandering home from the village yesterday evening. I'd just been to watch San Jaime and San José get their annual walkabout on the shoulders of the villagers. After all our village fiesta is held in honour of San Jaime.

Last year when I was taking my snaps I tried hard to get shots without the ubiquitous small vans in the background, without tractors and without the recycling bins. This time I decided that they were an integral part of the fun. More than that I decided they were actually a symbol of the relevance and the continuity of the event.

In the procession the Carnival Queen and her Maids of Honour were in a traditional costume. Everyone else (priest excepted) wore ordinary clothes. It's an interesting idea "traditional costume" - most young Alicantino women seem to be wearing shorts this summer or at least clothes bought from Zara, Mango and Stradivarius. They are unlikely to ever wear long pleated skirts and shawls. So, at some time in the future, will the Carnival Queen be decked out in shorts and T shirt? Who decides what period represents traditional? Why not 12th Century costume or clothes from the 1960s?

In fact the whole procession was a very everyday sort of event. I've seen scores of small carved this or that saint or virgin moving around the streets of Spain dodging the parked cars and litter bins just as presumably they once dodged middens and loose animals.

So, back to where I started. Wandering home, watching the sun set and thinking how nice it all looked in a scruffy and non twee sort of way. Time may be slower in the countryside but it hasn't stopped.

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