Posts tagged Semana Santa

The Easter Bunny Doesn’t Come to Spain

Ahh, Easter. That time of the year when the Easter bunny makes his sweet deliveries to all of the sugar-addicted children, when eggs are painted bright colors and hidden in the grass for hunting, and chocolate bunnies and marshmallow chicks are mass-produced. I suppose, if you’re Catholic, good chances are this might be the second time of the year you go to church (Christmas and Easter Catholics, anyone?) Or, maybe not, but that just about accurately describes me.

Growing up, Easter was always a favorite holiday. HELLOOO, have you tried Cadbury eggs?! But here in my dearly adopted country of Spain, I’m pain-stricken to say no jelly-beans or Peeps will be consumed, no plastic eggs will be hidden, and no Easter baskets will be filled. Instead, I’m heading up to the lush, green north of Spain to consume pintxos and kalimotxos to my heart’s content and maybe take in some traditional Semana Santa processions.

Good news is, if I’m really desperate for Cadbury, I can hop over to Gibraltar or even buy the Lindt chocolate eggs I saw advertised in the stores yesterday. We’ll see how I hold up. Until then, my Easter-bunny believing readers, indulge for me and enjoy these pictures of Semana Santa (Holy Week) processions I witnessed in Tarifa my first Easter here, last year.

P.S. YES, I know they look like Ku Klux Klan, but I promise this is the traditional uniform for brotherhoods during Holy Week in Spain. They’re called capirotes and are used to conceal the identity of those wearing them. In Andalucía, where I live, the processions are among the most famous, and thousands gather in crowds to witness the elaborate (and HEAVY!) statues being carried through the streets. This week is a solemn affair for which each city takes the entire year to plan. Yesterday, when rain fell in some parts of Spain and processions were cancelled, everyone was crying in the streets. Intense!

Sevilla For The Senses

Southern Spain possesses many enchanting places, but it’s impossible to not let the antique charm of Sevilla sweep you into its colorful fairytale. Sevilla is at the heart of all things Andalusian: flamenco, bullfighting, sangria and they are all heightened here.

In years past, Sevilla felt the influx of New World riches and has been called home by many wealthy and influential Spanish families, including Catholic Monarchs Isabella and Ferdinand who authorized Columbus’ voyage.

Today, Sevilla is shaped by its rich history and the Sevillanos are a robust people known for their elaborate festivals such as Semana Santa and Feria de Abril.

Below are the sights, the sounds, the smells…everything Sevillano that permeates your surroundings in this city:

Sight

The young to the elderly dressed in their finest slacks, leather shoes and pastel sweaters. The romance of the Rio Guadalquivir reflecting streetlamps from the barrio Triana. The enormous Catedral awash in golden light. The intricate tile-work at Plaza España.

Taste

 The flavor of creamy gelato, savory tapas and refreshing Aqua de Sevilla.

Sound

 The clacking of horse hooves on pavement. The Spanish guitar played for spare change on sidewalks.

Touch

 The feel of silky fabrics for sale in the markets, and the uneven cobblestone streets under your feet.

Smell

The fragrance of smoky incense from churches tucked away in corners and orange trees lining the streets.

This is Sevilla for the senses.

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