La Feria en Sevilla 2012: Organised Annual Mass Lunacy

25 Apr

Trust Seville to put the spring back in my step and a semi-permanent smile on my face.

After the solemnity of Semana Santa and in defiance of the crisis Andalusians are partying like mañana will never come. I always imagined Carnival in Rio would be the party to end all parties but I don’t think it can top this one for my taste. Free flowing alcohol (even saw several riders simultaneously drinking sherry and riding down the street), fried food, dancing, thousands of gorgeously costumed women and men, hundred of decorated horses and carriages, smartly clad equestrians, cute kids and a fun fair – what more could you want every day and night for a week?

Of course it gets a little out of hand – a bit like Aussies at Melbourne Cup day. Too much excitement and booze and some of the women who poured themselves into those super tight flouncy Sevillanas dress come a bit unstuck…. But as an example of organised chaos you have to see it to believe it. I spent a delerious couple of hours wandering around the dusty streets people watching and popped into a couple of public casetas for a drink (most are private parties). Everyone is happy to be photographed – after all that’s the main point of the exercise for many.

I dashed back for the nightly Flamenco show in Casa de la Memoria and wasn’t disappointed. A class act as ever (see Flamenco page for comments).

An after show tapas with Amontillado sherry down the lane at Las Teresas was delicious with the bonus that several riders clip clopped down the narrow pedestrian-only street right past the bar – see the photo below!

Tears flowed this morning as I walked over the bridge to Triana, both with joy to be back as well as sadness, that the authorities felt it necessary to clear the locks from the railings of the bridge. Mine are gone too but I know they were there and nothing can erase my memories. Now I have several more happy ones to add to the store, like seeing the 50-something woman in her electric wheelchair zooming over the bridge on her way to Feria with her smartly dressed man striding by her side. She looked stunning in her black dress with emerald green frills and a matching emerald rose in her dark hair.

This afternoon it’s back to Feria for me too then two Flamenco shows tonight and tomorrow I start classes again with beautiful Alicia Marquez (sadly Leonor Leal had to cancel this week). I have new Flamenco shoes to break in and I can’t wait!

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