Hallowe’en – It’s my holiday!!

It’s that time of year again, when I get annoyed and frustrated on behalf of my culture, my traditions and my childhood memories. ‘I can’t stand Hallowe’en’, I hear all too often from people who aren’t Irish, followed by a damning reference to it being an American invention, exported around the world like Coca-Cola and Santa in a red suit. (And, by the way, what’s so terrible about American inventions?). The irony, of course, is that, while people are perfectly content to sip Coke and sit on Santa’s fat red knee, Hallowe’en is actually a European festival, specifically a west coast, Celtic European festival, exported to America.

Hallowe’en is ours, and it has always been one of my favourite festivals (although, I have to admit, I’m pretty much equal opportunities when it comes to festivals, feasts, holy days, and all those other times when we get to behave in weird and wonderful out-of-the-ordinary ways).

Hallowe’en was a big deal when I was a child growing up in 1970s and 1980s rural Ireland. The first hint of Hallowe’en each year came in late September or early October with the first barm brack brought home from O’Brien’s supermarket in Edenderry. We’d eat the fruit brack slathered in butter, with a cup of tea and, being the only child in the family until I was five years old, I always got the cheap metal wedding ring wrapped in grease proof paper that lay hidden in the middle of the brack. By the time Hallowe’en came around I usually had four or five rings, as my family ate our way through quite a few bracks in those few short weeks.

As Hallowe’en grew ever closer the hazelnuts on the hedges down the road near Rabbitfield were ready to eat. I went alone, or with Daddy, or with my cousin Martin who lived down the road, fraught with anxiety as we gathered hazelnuts on that haunted stretch of road. It was widely known around Ballygibbon that Rabbitfield House was haunted. Indeed, Daddy and my black Labrador, Lassie, had had a frightening supernatural encounter as they walked in the field in front of the derelict house one day – Lassie’s hair standing on the back of her neck and Daddy swearing he would never go there again. (Even today, as a sensible worldly-wise 44 year old, when I drive past Rabbitfield at night, I put my foot on the accelerator and drive those lonely 200 metres at high speed, never looking in the rear view mirror for fear of what might be looking back at me!).

I digress. There was the barm brack and the hazelnuts, essential Hallowe’en food. There were monkey nuts (peanuts), almonds and brazil nuts in the shops – highly exotic and highly seasonal foods in rural Ireland back in those days. At school we made ghoulish masks and witches hats out of cornflakes boxes and toilet roll inserts and lots of glue and paint. The shops sold Hallowe’en masks – tight pinching plastic affairs that scratched your face and caused profuse facial sweating, attached to your head by elastic bands that broke your hair and hurt your ears.

I was never particularly crafty, and my attempts at witches and ghouls inspired by Mary’s Make-and-Do on Saturday morning television generally failed and, anyway, I always looked forward to the new mask I would get each year at O’Brien’s or when we went shopping in Mullingar.

By October 31st each year I was almost sick with excitement. I dressed as a púca – a witch or a ghost or a ghoul or a banshee and – together with my cousins Catherine and Sheila, and the occasional cross-dressing adult who decided to join in the fun – walked the dark road of Ballygibbon (usually in the rain), stopping at each house (most of our neighbours were cousins on Daddy’s side of the family) where, as tradition dictated, we sang, or told a joke, or played a musical instrument, or did a dance, in return for sweets, fruit, nuts or, sometimes, money. With Ballygibbon under our belts, I was driven the two miles into Edenderry (some years with my cousins in tow, some years just me and my sister), where we did the rounds of Gilroy Avenue, where my Nana Kitty lived (still lives) and Castleview Park where my aunt Lillie lived. More embarrassed singing, telling jokes, dancing (‘You start’, ‘No, you start’, ‘I won’t sing unless you sing’) in exchange for more sweets, fruit, nuts and money.

And then it was into my Nana’s house or back home to Ballygibbon, for games. We bobbed for apples, putting our faces in basins of water, hands behind our backs, trying to get an apple using only our mouths. We bobbed for nuts as well, which was a mad endeavour, especially as many sank to the bottom. But we were always willing to risk drowning for a sunken almond. Apples were tied from string from the ceiling and, again with hands behind backs, we had to try to take a bite of the swinging apple using only our mouths. For months afterwards, thumbtacks remained on my Nana’s living room ceiling, testament to our Hallowe’en madness. And my favourite and, at the same time, least favourite game was the one where we placed a grape on top of a mound of flour. The goal was to use a knife to remove the flour without the grape falling from the top of the mound. If your knife swipe caused the grape to fall, you had to stick your head into the plate of flour (yuck) and retrieve the grape with your mouth.

Over the years I have brought my Hallowe’en traditions with me and shared them with my students in Japan, and last year here in our little village in Spain. I’ve learned a lot about Hallowe’en traditions over the years and how they vary from region to region in Ireland, and in Wales, Scotland, Cornwall and Brittany. We share many similarities too. Apples are at the centre of many Hallowe’en traditions, as is dressing up and performing. We never had Jack-o-lanterns where I come from, so I assumed it was a new American tradition. But then I found out that the tradition arose in Ireland, with carved turnips (what my husband calls ‘swede’ (a point of contention in our marriage) and what Americans call ‘rutabega’) and was transposed to an equally, or perhaps more appropriate American vegetable, the pumpkin.

Hallowe’en has been around for a long time. It was the Celtic festival Oiche Samhain, the night when fairies and púcas from the other world crossed over into the human world. Like many pre-Christian festivals, it was syncretised by Christianity, and became the eve of the double holy days of November 1st, the Feast of All Saints and November 2nd, the Feast of All Souls. And growing up in Ireland when I did, we celebrated all of those things – the fairies, the púcas, the saints and the souls.

So this year, if someone bemoans that ‘American holiday’, please remind them that it is, in fact, a holiday that has roots deep in the pre-Christian Celtic cultures of the west coast of Europe. Indeed, it would appear the earliest reference to the holiday in the US only dates back to 1911. Like St. Patrick’s Day, it has been transformed by our good neighbours on the other side of the Atlantic. But one thing culture and traditions are incapable of doing is remaining unchanged. Just as Christians of 1600 years ago changed the meaning of Hallowe’en in Ireland, so Americans have changed the practice and re-exported it. But at heart it remains a playful, liminal holiday, when norms and rules are transgressed, when the doors between worlds open up, and when, with just a little persuasion, I might risk drowning in a basin of cold water for a mouldy old monkey nut.

 

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An educational perambulation

While we still had the hired car we’d used to get from Faro airport back to Carina, we decided to go for a hike a little farther downriver. We drove five miles back to Laranjeiras, parked the car, and we did an 8km circular walk up into the hills on the Portuguese side of the river. The 15th of November and it was already hot at 9am, the late autumn sun shining down from a cloudless blue sky. The walk took us up through the tiny village of Laranjeiras, along steep paths so narrow you could almost touch the old whitewashed houses on either side. On the outskirts of the village we passed an olive grove with tarpaulin spread beneath the trees, catching the falling olives. We were soon out of the village, the winding path taking us past scrubby bushes festooned with dew covered spider webs, higher and higher up through olive and almond groves, higher than the mist that still lingered over the river.

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The path wound down again, through the village of Guerreiros de Rio, where we stopped for coffee, freshly squeezed orange juice and pastries, and then the even smaller hamlet of Alamo, where the path once again wound steeply uphill through the houses and into the hilly countryside beyond.

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The path was dusty and rocky, the olive, almond, fig and other trees gnarled and ancient-looking. There was a species of tree that befuddled us. It had acorns growing on it, but didn’t look like any oak tree we’d ever seen before. The leaves were small and shiny, more akin to holly than oak. This tree too was gnarly and twisted in trunk and branch. The one-page leaflet with the trail map soon set us straight. It is the cork oak. The first cork oaks we saw were small, but later we saw bigger, older trees, that had been harvested of their cork coats on the lower parts of their trunks. We thought of the importance of this tree to the economy of the region. How the cork from the oak tree seals the bottles of wine from the vines and the bottle of olive oil and jars of olives from the olive trees. These three trees all looking so old even when they are young are the lifeblood of the region’s culture.

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As we walked along we looked out for rabbits and hares, guessed at the names of trees, and discussed what we knew of the border history of this part of the Portuguese/Spanish border. At the highest point of our climb was a windmill which had been in operation up until the 1940s. We could still see the cog mechanism inside. That got us thinking about food and we got the girls thinking about grain, the uses we have for different grains and how important this windmill would have been to the people of the area when it was in operation.

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Katie wanted a ‘math’s challenge’, something she’d picked up from her Oregon friend Kenna when we’d been out walking a few days earlier. So we challenged her, giving her easy addition at first, and making it more complicated as the morning wore on. Lily didn’t want to be left out, so Julian threw maths problems at her and she surprised us with the speed at which she solved them in her head and with her ability to add and subtract fractions – something we didn’t know she could do.

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We practiced Spanish on each other as we walked along. Because Julian and I know slightly different things and remember slightly different vocabulary, we’re able to challenge each other with what we know. So a game ensued of saying what we knew, making us sentences, all four of us trying to figure out what the others were saying.

This wasn’t the first time that I’ve been struck by how much learning happens when we go walking. My family loves to walk and the stream of consciousness that is inspired by what we see in the world around us as we walk inspires us to do all sorts of learning. Maths is somehow much more fun when practiced in the fresh air than when sitting at the table with books and pencils. Spanish too. Geography, botany, agriculture, history, ecology, meteorology are all around us, and it’s impossible not to learn.

We returned home from our walk exercised in body and mind, hungry for lunch and hungry too for the things we’d discovered we didn’t know – such as Portugal’s area and population, it’s recent history, and a plethora of Spanish words that we decided we simply had to know.

Working at Warwick Castle

by Julian

As Martina mentioned previously, I have taken a seasonal job at Warwick Castle as a ‘Litter Assistant’ to see us through the summer until we can return to Carina. The job doesn’t pay much but it fits in well with the time that we will be around here and I cannot see any adverts for summer geophysicists!

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I started at the beginning of July, only a couple of weeks after returning to England and my first early morning shifts were lovely. Entering the castle grounds before the public and walking to the top of ‘The Mound’, which was built by the Norman’s in the 11th century, you get a beautiful view across the Warwickshire countryside. I wore a pedometer for an 8 hour shift, to find that I had walked over 22,000 steps.

My job involves walking the grounds of an historic monument all though the summer and getting really fit doing it. I can understand why people actually volunteer to litter pick at some National Trust properties! Other lovely views are from the peacock garden, along the Capability Brown landscaped grounds, to the bend in the river and also along the river itself, looking up at the walls of the castle. I have seen areas of the castle not generally accessible to the public, including the lovely ‘Ladies walk’ that looks down on the old ruined bridge over the Avon, the Mill Street gardens and over a row of old houses.

I have also had the opportunity to learn local history as part of my job. The ‘History Team’ do some entertaining and informative tours which are at no extra cost to the visitor. Unfortunately some people dismiss the castle as an amusement park, due to it being run by ‘Merlin’ who also run the UK’s biggest theme park ‘Alton Towers’. However, even without the history team, I have the major points of the the castle’s history imprinted on my mind by the ‘Horrible Histories’ stage show ‘Wicked Warwick’. The show is primarily aimed at children, but from this show I now know the names of the first 8 earls of Warwick and an interesting fact about each of them, I know what side Warwick took in the English civil war and about all of the major construction phases the castle went through. Some people get a bit sniffy about the castle entertaining families, but it is odd for people to dislike history being brought to life for children. I think that is one of the highest aims we can have for our heritage, one which will ensure it survives and flourishes in the minds and hearts of the next generation.

I have one admission to make. Of course I am a little partisan. I learned to sail from the age of 5 on the River Avon, looking up at the majestic walls of this castle and anyone who has regularly read this blog knows where that has led to in our lives. A place like this can be with you for a lifetime. Returning to the castle and keeping it clear of litter, however briefly, has been fun and an education for me, strange as that might sound. I hope I can make the most of my remaining time here.

London Interlude

I’ve spent five of the past six days in London – two by myself and three with Lily and Katie. On Friday evening I took the train from Leamington to Marylebone, to spend a weekend visiting a friend. Upon arrival I was treated to a tour of the BBC at New Broadcasting House and I got to sit in with the production team making the News at Ten. It was an incredible experience to see the news being made and observe the interactions between the directors and producers behind the scenes and the newscaster in the studio and reporters reporting live from – on that night – Kos, Calais and Cleveland.

Over the course of the weekend my friend and I strolled along the South Bank, took the clipper to Greenwich, went to a rooftop open air cinema showing of Top Gun (woohoo!!), ate lots and walked lots. We discussed dreams and plans, the current state of the books we’re currently writing, and I returned to Leamington Spa on Sunday night feeling rejuvenated and with my enthusiasm for my writing in overdrive.

I had Monday to do laundry and repack and then the girls and I were off to London again on Tuesday morning for three days of sightseeing and visiting another London friend and her family.

The girls had never been to London before and were beside themselves with excitement – and a little nervous to boot. They each requested to see different things. Katie wanted to see Buckingham Palace and Lily Big Ben.

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We arrived in Victoria Coach Station at lunchtime and strolled down to Buckingham Palace. Katie was thrilled by the palace and by the soldiers in their tall bear skin hats. As we sat on the steps of the Victoria Monument, gazing at the Palace as we ate our lunch of peanut butter and banana sandwiches, Katie said ‘I can’t believe I’ve seen a real palace and real soldiers for the first time today’. Lily took a great interest in the Victoria Monument, although I think her image of Victoria is somewhat skewed from watching the movie Pirates, where Victoria is a bug-eyed psychopath bent on eating all the world’s rarest animals!

Katie's not entirely convinced!!

Katie’s not entirely convinced!!

From Buckingham Palace we walked through St. James’ Park, stopping at a great little playground, where the girls removed their sandals and played in the sand. From there it was St. Margaret’s Chapel and then the Palace of Westminster where Lily got as close as possible to Big Ben. She loved that she had to crane her neck when she was up close! At Horse Guards the girls were partly intrigued partly terrified by the soldiers in their funny uniforms and their regal horses. We were lucky enough to be there for a changing of the guard. They’ve been talking about it ever since and the spectacle is not likely something they will soon forget.

Of all the things they got to do in London, Katie’s favourite was when all three of us rode horses on an old-fashioned carousel in Jubilee Park. The last time I was on one of those was outside the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. in 2000! Another highlight for the girls (and for me) was a troupe of street performers in Jubilee Park, whose acrobatics and limbo performance was jaw-dropping.

By the time we reached our friend’s house in Kingston we were all tired and hungry, but it didn’t stop the girls and my friend’s two children staying up way past their bedtime because they were all having so much fun together. My friend and I stayed up way past our bedtime too, but when you only get to see good friends every couple of years, there’s always lots of catching up to do.

The next day we all went to London together and following a picnic lunch in Hyde Park we spent the afternoon at the Natural History Museum. We saw the dinosaurs and the geology displays, but that was only the tip of the iceberg. Already I’m thinking about another trip to London in the autumn, once the school term has begun, when the museum will be less busy, and we can explore even more of that amazing place.

The next morning we said farewell to our friends and I planned to take a boat out to Greenwich and take the girls to the Observatory. Alas, by the time our train arrived in Waterloo the heavens had opened. We had no raincoats, no umbrella and all three of us were wearing our sandals, so walking anywhere in Greenwich suddenly lost its appeal.

I took them to the National Gallery on Trafalgar Square instead, only to discover that the staff were on strike and the queue to get in was vast. We had to get out of the rain, so we ran into the National Portrait Gallery around the corner. It turned out to be mostly lovely – apart from an overzealous security guard who didn’t want people (including us) eating their lunch while sitting on the floor outside the overcrowded cafe. There were good activities for children and I got to visit parts of the gallery I hadn’t been to before. Lily impressed me by pointing to a line-up of busts of 19th Century men and saying ‘Isn’t that one Charles Darwin?’! (Her interest in Darwin also comes from watching that same movie, Pirates!)

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We stepped out of the gallery in mid-afternoon just as the pedestrians of London were putting their umbrellas away, so I showed the girls around Trafalgar Square, pointing out the fountain where I cooled my hot tired feet during a heat wave seven years ago when I came to London with a little nine-week old Lily-embryo in my tummy!

All too soon it was time to catch the bus back to the Midlands. The girls were both fast asleep within minutes of getting on the bus, but somewhere found the energy to tell Daddy and Grandma all about their adventure when they finally got home last night.

USS Willow

In 1924 the US Lighthouse Service commissioned the construction of a Mississippi steam boat. Dubuque Boat and Boiler Works won the contract and began construction at a cost of $372,000. The boat was built in a shipyard downriver from St. Louis. She was 200 feet long and 64 feet wide, and drew 9 feet of water. When complete, she underwent trials on Lake Keokuk, Iowa. From there she proceeded to New Orleans. The boat was named the Willow and she joined the Lighthouse Service on 4 October 1927.

The Willow was assigned to the 15th Lighthouse District in Memphis and she aided navigation along the Mississippi between New Orleans and St. Louis, spending her winter months in New Orleans.

With her 9 foot draught, there are many places along the river where the Willow simply could not go. The US Army Corps of Engineers tried to maintain a 9 foot channel in the Mississippi, but the Willow’s movements were restricted, and she was accompanied by a 38 foot support vessel that could get to the places Willow could not. Despite this, she was widely referred to as ‘the pride of the Lighthouse Service’. She was such a beautiful boat that some mistakenly took her to be a private yacht, rather than a working government boat.

In 1939 the Lighthouse Service merged with the Coast Guard and Willow was designated a Coast Guard cutter, carrying on the same role along the Mississippi between New Orleans and St. Louis throughout World War Two.

On 15 December 1944 Willow collided with USS LST-841 and both ships were badly damaged. The cost of repairs and continued maintenance were considered to be too high, so the Willow was decommissioned on 1 March 1945.

DSCI0133The first view we got of the USS Willow was over the protective sea wall was we motored west towards the entrance to the marina at Benalmádena on the Costa del Sol. After taking on fuel and paying our marina fees we slowly motored through the marina to our allocated berth, passing the Willow berthed on the outer edge of the marina. We were immediately struck by her New Orleans grandeur, her column-supported wooden decks reminding us of Showboat and Huckleberry Finn.

Benalmádena is a gaudy, high-rise blighted tourist resort with lurid statues of Neptune and sea nymphs adorning the marina complex and larger-than-life fibreglass polar bears and Yeti advertising bars and restaurants offering the usual holiday resort fare of burgers, pizzas and beer.

During our few days in Benalmádena, we walked around to the outer harbour to get a closer look at the Willow and we did a little online research to learn more about her. So how did this beautiful elegant steamboat end up here, in package-holiday central, with razor wire around her decks and looking sadly neglected?

DSCI0140After her decommissioning in 1945 her machinery was removed and she was turned overto the US Army Corps of Engineers who used her as a Quarters Boat. She served as a mess and berth for Corps of Engineers labourers, including German prisoners of war.

In 1962 she was sold to a Paducah, Kentucky businessman who planned to transform her into a floating restaurant and hotel, but this plan did not materialise. She remained unused and tied up at Paducah until 1965, when she was sold to the WS Young Construction Company and towed to New Orleans.

In September 1965, while berthed at LaPlace, Louisiana, Hurricane Betsy beached Willow high on the levee. There she was abandoned to the hands of vandals until she was rescued by the US Marshall in New Orleans. She was sold at auction to a relative of the owners of Young Construction who then sold her, yet again, in 1970, to Belezian Industries. They bought her as an investment and moved her to Florida, hoping to repair her and quickly sell her on. One prospective buyer planned to operate her as a lobster factory in British Honduras. After $18,000 worth of work repairing 45 feet of her bow, this deal fell through.

In 1972 she was sold to a British company, Themes International.

DSCI0122We have been unable to find out what happened to her for the seventeen years after 1972. But we pick up the story again in 1989.

In 1989 she was transported across the Atlantic on a semi-submersible to Southampton on the south coast of England. From there she was taken to Antwerp, Belgium, for refurbishment. While she was in Antwerp, Themes International went out of business, and she remained in Antwerp until 1995, when she was bought once again and transported back to Birkenhead in the UK.

DSCI0120From there, in 1996, she made the journey to her final – or latest – destination, Benalmádena in Mediterranean Spain. For two years she operated as a floating bar and restaurant under the name Mississippi Willow. Afternoon cruises were offered and she opened up as a restaurant each evening. It appears that she closed for business sometime around 1998 as the owners could not afford the rather considerable mooring costs of such a large vessel. Her lower decks are now surrounded by metal and razor wire, and she lies empty and abandoned on the outer wall of Benalmádena.

We were sad to see a vessel once in the service of safe navigation along one of the world’s great waterways now reduced to a has-been tourist attraction on the other side of the world. But perhaps her fate could have been worse. Her collision in 1944 could have sunk her. Had she not been auctioned on from the levee at LaPlace she could have finally succumbed to the ravages of nature and vandals. All along the way she has been abandoned due to poor management, bad investment, and owners going out of business. But yet she carries on. She’s still afloat. The razor wire protects her from vandals. Maybe someday someone will see the Willow‘s potential and help restore her to her former glory.

PS. In October 2015 I received the following email from a Bill Huthmacher in the United States:

Saw your post about the sidewheeler Willow.  My great 
uncle, Harry Hines, was one of her Captains and piloted her on the 
Mississippi for the Corps of Engineers, as a lighthouse tender.  Off and
 on, I have been putting together a history of her for years.  It looks 
like the time you are missing may be when she was in the UK on the river
 Thames as a restaurant. I found she was in Benalmadena several years 
ago, but figured she would have been scrapped by now.  I think it is 
humorous that she was advertised as a former showboat.  Thanks for the 
update!

 

Semana Santa

Here in southeast Spain Holy Week, the week between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, is a time of penance, prayer and processions. On Thursday we took the bus into Almeria to watch one of the processions, and it was memorable.

DSCI0067We found the perfect viewing spot amongst the seated enclosures set up all along the main shopping street and gazed in wonder at the spectacle as it went past.

These Semana Santa (Holy Week) processions have a history dating back to the 16th Century and the Spanish Counter Reformation. Local parishes, civil groups and other organisations have their own confradias, fraternities responsible for the care and maintenance of elaborate statues of Jesus and Mary, and preparing throughout the year for these Semana Santa processions. There are 23 of these confradias in Almeria, and throughout the week there are two, three or more processions each evening and night.

The Nazarenos, or penitants, are hidden behind masks and pointed hats, wearing long robes and capes, rosary beads, and some carrying crosiers, bibles and other Catholic symbols. Although to our eyes the costumes are disturbingly similar to Ku Klux Klan, their symbolism to these Spanish penitents is entirely unrelated. The tall pointed hats carry the same symbolism as church spires and cypress trees in cemetaries – carrying the penitents sins up to heaven. And the masks perform the same function as the enclosed darkness of the confessional, hiding the identity of the penitants and allowing for private penance behind the mask. At the procession we attended, the Nazarenos all wore black and white, but other groups in different processions wear purples, reds and other bright colours.

The Nazarenos walked slowly down the street in formation, followed by altar boys swinging thuribles of incense, that familiar smell of Catholic ritual filling the air. Behind the altar boys came the large statue of the suffering Christ, carried on the shoulders of more penitents, hidden underneath heavy velvet cloth. And behind them came the brass band, playing piercing and mournful music.

DSCI0074In the old days, only men were allowed to process in penance, but these days women participate too, and some of the leaders of the groups were clearly women, judging by their footwear and finger rings! Some penitants were accompanied by their children and I was amused at one point to see a mother and father, each with a child, stop, pull out baby drinking bottles from their swaths of robes, and give their children quick drinks!

DSCI0078After the Christ statue came the women, dressed in widows garb, with high mantillas on their heads, rosery beads wrapped around their hands. They in turn were followed by more altar boys swinging thuribles and then a statue of the suffering Virgin Mary, carried on the shoulders of more penitants draped in velvet, and another brass band.

DSCI0083Like the little boy with his dad, in an earlier photo, I was also particularly taken by a woman in her late 60s. Despite the penance and the seriousness of the occasion, she was wearing her sexiest shoes and was having a bit of lighthearted a giggle with the pointy-hatted man to her left!

DSCI0090On Good Friday, the girls and I attended another procession in Aguadulce. This was much more low key, without the elaborate dress, and was more akin to Good Friday services that I am used to in Ireland. After a prayer service in the church in Aguadulce, a large crucifix with the crucified Christ was carried from the church by about ten men. They were followed by fifty or so penitants, mostly old women and men, who proceeded around the streets of Aguadulce, praying, singing hymns and stopping every couple of hundred yards to do the Stations of the Cross and say the rosary.

The Blessed Virgin in Almeria

The Blessed Virgin in Almeria

We’ve returned to our pagan ways aboard Carina this morning. The Easter bunny came in the night and hid chocolate eggs and rabbits around Carina‘s deck and on the pontoon. The girls have been kept busy searching for the chocolate before it gets melted by the hot spring sun!!

Happy Easter everyone!