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Published: June 22nd 2010
at the game. go spain!
Craziest festival I've ever seen!
Las Hogueras de San Juan officially started on Sunday (20th) and will last until Thursday (24th) night. This is the biggest festival I've ever seen. All of the main streets are blocked off completely and because of this we have to take a different bus to school because the routes are different. There are around 90 hogueras in total which are the statues I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs. They are located all throughout the city on the streets where they are blocked off. Some are enormous and raise up to 30 or so feet. They are made out of wood and different paper materials and painted so pretty. Each one has a different theme and many of them are a satire or critique a certain aspect of the culture or government. Yesterday I had the opportunity to walk around and look at a bunch of them. They are amazing!! It almost reminds me of winter carnival at Tech except x1000!
Some of the larger hogueras had a budget of a couple hundred thousand dollars to make and it is an actual profession for the artists to design and create these things.
en el barrio
I can't believe how extravagant they are. They craziest part is, is that on the last night of the festival at midnight they burn them all. It is wild. I guess its all part of the tradition. We learned that Thursday is the longest day of the year and the farmers used to celebrate it by burning things. Las Hogueras de San Joan are celebrated in other parts of Europe but not quite like they do it here.
This festival pretty much never stops. There are parades every evening and music all throughout the day. There are tents set up in all the streets where there are makeshift bars and restaurants. There are also tons and tons of street venders selling homemade crafts. On each street corner there is some sort of DJ and dance floor where they play music until 4 in the morning. Its been loud trying to go to sleep every night but I've been so tired it hasn't been a problem. I've never been to New Orleans for Mardi Gras but it might be similar. I've never seen a festival so grand scale before and I am so happy I get to be here for
The best part about yesterday was that Spain won against Honduras 2-0! We watched it in el barrio again and I've never seen it so packed. Everyone had their Spain jerseys on and there was a group of guys with microphones instigating cheers and such. It was a blast. Tonight I'm going to celebrate a little of the fiesta but there will be more to come this week. My last day of school for the week is tomorrow!!
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