And also, the most tiring! By 3am Monday morning, my pedometer said that I had walked a total of 87km in the last 7 days, but my God it was worth it! Rewinding 168 hours to the the 13th, and the start of the adventure…
Monday and Tuesday were spent looking at the fallas that were being constructed throughout the city. Every time I turned a corner I had a new favourite, and considering that there are over 800, I had a fair few favourites by the end of Tuesday. My two favourites were the Indian themed Convent Jerusalem, and the French Revolution themed Plaça del Pilar, complete with its 4m tall horses! It’s often hard to remember that these are made from wood and polystyrene because they are a) massive and b) stunningly beautiful! Tuesday we also enjoyed our last Mascletà of the year! Boy am I going to miss them… Having got home at 2.30am Wednesday morning, it’s fair to say that I wasn’t looking forward to getting up at 6.30 to go to work, but I managed it, consoling myself with the fact that they had at least let me have the Thursday off, to be able to enjoy les falles.
Arriving in Carcaixent (Laura’s town) on Wednesday evening, I immediately went fallas-hunting, managing to see 6 of the 13 in the town in less that an hour. Then it was time for the festival to really get started, going to our own falla! The big falla was sea themed and the children’s? Shakespeare themed! It represented Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, A Midsummer’s Night Dream, Hamlet and the Merchant of Venice and was, in my (not-biased) opinion, the best in the town. Unfortunately, it appears that that view was very biased because the judges only gave us 3rd prize… and 4th for the big falla!
The days that followed were a blur of passacarrers (street parades), sleepless nights and discomovils (nightclubs but in the streets) all ending on Sunday night with the Cremà and the end of the any faller (Year of Fallas). Seeing the monument converted into flames and then into ash, in the middle of a town square is an extremely emotional moment and it’s amazing how attached you get to the monuments, so much so that even though they are only there for 5 days of the year, when you wake up on the 20th and there are none left, it’s like the town is completely empty.
On Monday, to get over the post-fallas blues, and taking advantage of the post-fallas sales, I bought myself a new traje faller for which I had been saving since the start of the year, and it’s a good job that I had saved because even with the 40% discount it still cost over 160€… But so worth it!
Tomorrow I’m going to Castelló to see the Magdalena, the second festival in Valencia which in truth I know hardly anything about… So let’s see!
359 days until Fallas… I’m waiting very impatiently!