Fallas Oliva


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I am sure most of you will have seen the Fallas over the weekend last week with the finale being Sunday night. I am also sure many of you had woke up the next day with a sore head – obviously due to the amount of fireworks and bangers that were constantly going off. Such is the Fallas. Oliva was no exception and we had our own Fallas – in fact five of them in total.

The nights started early with the obligatory beer or two just to get the evening underway in the newly opened Bar Music, same bar, same owners just different staff. At 12 we all shuffled over to Pension and Fet - = worthy winners of the Paella competition but this year were fifth in the fallas competition. However we weren’t quick enough as the people had started returning to go to the paseo.

Not to worry we followed the madding crowd down the paseo and watched as the procession of bodies came down accompanied by the brass band, go go dancers and dancing bears. Oh no that’s Rio De Janeiro isn’t it? But atleast the bands were there in full voice blowing to everything. Then arrived the fire brigade to ensure nothing untoward happens. It never ceases to amaze me how such a huge structure can be erected so close to a building (a mere 3 metres away) without any damage. If there was a problem I am not sure the small one inch hoses they use would be sufficient to put a fire out. However it seemed to work because there were no incidents.

I wont go into the history of the Fallas as it has been explained before many a time. However nowadays the fallas artists are a special breed and the fallas themselves depict local dignitaries or events that have happened in the previous year in a “Spitting image” kind of caricature.  The detail that goes into them is incredible – and all this out of Papier-mâché – and all to be burnt at the stake.

At the allotted time there was a fanfare of trumpets and a drum roll and the master of ceremonies set off the proceedings by lighting the blue touch paper. There then followed a 2 minute period of madness whilst firecrackers whizzed around our heads fireworks shot up into the air in a blaze of colour and splendour (and dropped down afterwards hitting people in the head and other body parts) and by the time it was over the fire was in full swing.

It doesn’t take long to get them going and even less time for them to finish. In the blink of an eyelid we had gone from full majestic artistry to a pile of ashes. And 30 minutes later you wouldn’t even know it had been there – they were cleaning up the mess by the time the crowds left for the next one. So off we went to the Bar institute fallas. And the whole process started again. After all the fallas I am sure many  of you went out and partied. I of course went straight to bed without even passing go.

I hope you all enjoyed this spectacle and for those of you that had friends over lets hope they took back some great memories of their visit.

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