Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Adieu Carnaval.



Last day of the carnival. We have seen the late part, the burning of the 'effigy': this year's being— a charming scene of a man opening his raincoat to a woman with huge breasts looking out of her window, to reveal a long green serpent . . .but decided to stick to the early 'sortie' this being light hearted and generally a good atmosphere. The late evening does live up to its name and becomes a bit sordid, despite the trial of the Carnaval, in Occitan, and the subsequent burning being eerily fascinating. I did go out for a brief tour at 10.00am dressed in orange and yellow with a huge hat covered in lemons, outfit left over from a previous years 'theme' with our band.
Anyway, back to this film. This group, I think called les Bodegas, usually play for this evening and I love the slightly haunting rendition of their versions of Carnaval tunes. Not sure if the main instruments are sheep or pig bodies . . .

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Sacking and ostrich feathers.


Mmm, good title for a book . . .
Look at this lot.
I mean, really: HOW did anyone think this up. Can only think it was the product of a heavy evening on some hideously strong liqueur made from old cheese.
Limoux Carnaval du Monde on Saturday featured this group. They were hotly followed by girating samba dancers: the contrast being, well, a good example of how very different us humans are. The sambistas, despite it being about 12 degrees, and not 35 as one might find in Rio, smiled, and wiggled their bits about seemingly with great joy and verve. Or it could have been gritted teeth, either way—a general fun ambience.It was amazing to see old men, sunk deep into their anoracks sudenly acknowledging that something was DIFFERENT in Limoux square on this particular Saturday morning—their heads emerging from scarves and collars like old tortoises.
The sacking and feathers brigade walked achingly slowly with expressions of varying sterness, and misery. Perhaps all their tax returns had arrived that morning, or their hotel had a cockroach infestation, or maybe it was all very noble . . .and I just missed the point. But I could not walk along in an inflated sack with a meter high white feather hat and a small basket of oranges without at least a small smirk of irony on my face.