The celebration of Semana Santa (Easter week) is huge in Montoro, in fact we were talking to a lady who had come from Granada to experience Montoro's celebrations. These celebrations were made so much better this year as we spent time with our great friends Pat and Pedro, who were able to tell us, where to go, when and why.... even if it meant considering leaving home at midnight to see the most amazing parade.
We met on the Tuesday evening first, for a great night full of loud marching bands, men dressed in Klu Klux Klan style outfits. The hoods are actually worn throughout the week to signify the mourning of the death of Jesus and removed to celebrate the resurrection. These outfits certainly do not have any other significance to the Klu Klux Klan. Ladies dressed in black with high mantillas walk through the streets, and the most unbelievable effigies which are carried through the streets. each effigy is very heavy, especially in Andalucia. Stong men carry them, in stages, swapping every 100 metres on so, and they will feel pain. These men feel it an honour to be carriers. An effigy can weigh up to a staggering 7000 lbs, 5150 kilos!!! Emotions are high and people shed tears at this awesome display of their beliefs. We stood for hours and every second was worth the wait as we saw two beautiful effigies make their way around the town. The first had Jesus on, following by the awesome candle lit virgin Mary! Tuesday evening with followed by a gorgeous meal, in one of Montoro's finest eateries!
I was "umming" and arring" about meeting Pat and Pedro for the all nighter for the Maundy Thursday parades. In the end I decided not to go as it had been raining on and off and it meant leaving home around midnight, and Alan picking me up again around 7 am. I'm afraid in the end I did n't go, I was n't quite hard core enough. Poor Pat and Pedro, did go and it all sadly got rained off. There would have been some devastated people that had be planning the night for the past year. I believe the Maundy Thursday parades are really the ones to see!
We did however go into town on Sunday for the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus. The town were all out in their finery, some you would think we going to a wedding, rather than watching a parade in the street. let's hope next year I can manage the Thursday parades too!
We did however watch the Sunday morning parade deplicting the resurrection