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Now living in l'Olleria, south of Valencia

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Las Fallas 2010

This year, we decided not to go up to Valencia, as it is so crowded, it is hard to move around. We went to Xativa instead, as there are so many fallas in such a small area. Many of the town around celebrate with fallas of their own, but generally they are much more spread out.

We arrived at about 9pm, but missed the first of the children's fallas (the smaller ones) and had to wait a while for the bigger ones to be set alight. Still, this was a good opportunity for a seat in the Avenue, watching the people going by, throwing fireworks, whilst having a beer/coke. I sampled the fallas fayre, which appeared to be some sort of ring doughnut. It tasted vaguely familiar, and then I realised that it was a pumpking doughnut. Interesting and worthy of another tasting in the future.

There was a group of older teenagers lighting fireworks in the central park. They had some really big rockets and bangers, and as they lit them, they all ran away. It was very funny watching them - they looked a bit like cockroaches running from the light! That said, they certainly weren't the sort of bangers that can be bought in England. The explosions were really loud, and the rockets pretty impressive (even though most of them went sideways, after hitting the treetops!). As we walked around, John stopped me, as someone had just 'dropped' a cracker that was about to go off at my feet, had I taken another step.

We watched 3 of the bigger fallas being lit, as these were just a few streets away from each other. You knew it was nearly time to light them, because the fire brigade turned up, ready to douse the buildings. The largest of the 3 had a band playing for nearly an hour, but they played mostly the same tune (presumably fallas related) which seemed to be fuelled by copious amounts of alcohol. Everyone had a great time and we had fun just watching them dancing and singing.

As usual, we were parked just out of town, making a quick escape very easy. As we left, we saw the terrible mess on all of the parked cars - a combination of fallen ash and firework debris. Another good reason to park where we had!

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