A sea of green for St Patrick's Day
Mar 22, 2017
I’ve had a very busy few weeks, not too sure how active Paul has been though!
It all started with a lovely lady on our camp site, called Joy, holding Afternoon Tea for a Cancer Charity. On a sunny day, under the gazebo in front of her caravan, six of us ladies enjoyed a glass of pink champagne before our little pinkies were extended for drinking tea from dainty bone china cups. We nibbled on delicious finger sandwiches, then scones smeared with jam and a great dollop of fresh cream before eating our way through a tiered plate of tiny cakes. Thank you Joy for giving us all a wonderful fun afternoon and all in aid of a great cause.
The next event was St Patrick’s Day. Benidorm certainly embraces the patron saint of Ireland. We walked 'The Strip' with friends Beryl and Gary and were absolutely amazed at the sea of green that fronted us. People were dressed from head to toe in the colours of Ireland, some had even dyed their hair green! Irish flags and bunting, orange white and green, waved and flapped from every pole and verandah and music blasted from every bar. We joined in the throng and downed a couple of pints of Guinness to toast the day and enjoyed sitting back watching the antics of all the people around us.
After St Pat’s day its the lead up to St Joseph’s Day and 'Las Fallas', a major festival for this part of Spain. For the past week we have heard the boom and bang of fireworks throughout the day and the night! The boom of the fire crackers reverberates around the buildings of the town making the noise quite deafening.
There are of course many religious services to mark St Joesph's Day, the patron saint of carpenters, and one of the most beautiful is the 'Flower Offering'. The Spanish ladies, men and children parade through the town wearing their magnificent national costumes carrying flowers that will be given to the church at the end of the parade. The women and girls dresses are a kaleidoscope of shimmering colour with the daintiest of lace veils flowing down their backs. And of course this stunning ceremony has to finish in a loud burst of colour and noise - yes, more fireworks!
On St Joseph's day the 'Las Fallas', 8 -10 metre high effigies that have been built in the streets of the town, are set alight at midnight. We watched as the flames, sparks and thick smoke soared high into the night sky, while fire fighters hosed down neighbouring buildings to prevent them from catching fire. Its an amazing festival that marks the end of the dark winter days and heralds the longer brighter days of spring.
I have rejoined the Benidorm U3A so am now back at art classes and joining in the weekly craft group. I have also been enjoying painting with the Dutch art group which meets on our camp site. They were pleased to see me again since our last stay here 2 years ago.
Amongst all of this we have had meals out with friends Linda and Phil from Devon and Pat and Keith from Bulgaria. Its lovely to be back in one of our favourite places.
Love to all and we look forward to hearing all your news.
Liz and Paul x