Tag Archives: Festivals

A Sunday Walk. Lots Of Colours. And A Happy Ending :)

Sunday was the last day of Corpus Christi week, Toledo’s major annual “fiesta”.  My friend Catalina and I decided to take to the streets with our cameras before all the decorative splendour disappeared back into the box again for another year.

Toledo Calle Ancha

The main shopping street

Even the local theatre got some fancy curtains

Even the local theatre was beautified with some very fancy curtains for the occasion

Part of a floral display outside the cathedral

Part of a floral display outside the cathedral

Never mind the giants lined up in front of the Town Hall - what's with the hundreds of bags filled with water dangling down from the balcony?!

Never mind the giants lined up in front of the Town Hall, they make an appearance every year – but what’s with the hundreds of bags filled with water dangling down from the balcony?! I’m guessing it’s to do with spending cuts…

Is it me or do they look like they've got goldfish in them...?

Is it me or do they look like they have goldfish in them…?

Catalina. I think she may be off-side ;-)

Catalina. I think she may be waaay off side 😉

You didn't think we'd be out there, toiling away in the streets of Toledo, without adequate sustenance, did you?!

All that hard toil out there in the scorching-hot streets deserved a reward at the end 🙂

Thyme Liqueur? Seriously…?!

Some things just don’t sound like a good idea. Until you try them. And such was the case with said thyme liqueur. A total winner!

But who’d come up with such a thing? Answer: The eccentric people of Toledo. In particular, a guy called Ricardo Sánchez Butragueño, who is attempting to commercialise this odd-sounding concoction following an old family recipe.

There’s a back story, of course. For hundreds of years, Toledo has been celebrating Corpus Christi (which fell on Thursday, 19th June this year) for all it’s worth. I mean, they seriously go to town on this one. I must confess, I’m not a particular fan of watching church furniture being lugged round the streets for hours on end by people in stuffy costumes.

The only thing I like about this gaudy spectacle is that they sprinkle the streets with thyme and rosemary. It smells nice. And all I can think about for the entire Corpus Christi week is Welsh roast lamb with butter-drenched new potatoes.

So, when Maria told me that someone had managed to “bottle the Corpus” and that the product launch was going to happen on one of her clients’ venues on Tuesday, we just had to go.

Three botles

Photogenic bottles!

Even the local press turned up for this momentous occasion

Even the local press turned up for this momentous occasion. Note the thyme sprigs strewn all over the floor. Nice idea, but they kept getting caught in my dress, making their way up towards my knickers. A bit scratchy…

Bottle with the back story in the background

Bottle with the back story in the background

 

Maria and I faffing with our cameras

Maria and I faffing with our cameras

This taking selfies thing is definitely NOT my forte...

This taking selfies thing is definitely NOT my forte… and I wasn’t even drunk at this point!

They let you have as much as you wanted... a fatal concept!

They let us have as much of the concoction as we wanted… a fatal concept!

Some people even turned up in bottle-matching outfits ;-)

Some people even turned up in bottle-matching outfits 😉

View of Toledo

View of Toledo from the venue

So, thumbs up to thyme liquor! Where have you been all my life?! The kind organisers gave freebie bottles to take home 🙂

[The event was held at Cigarral Del Angel Custodio, one of Toledo’s most splendid historical country houses. It has amazing garden and terrific views of Toledo, some of which I captured a few weeks back, when the roses were in bloom. Click here if you’d like to see those pics.]

The Fair Comes To Toledo – A Feast Not Only For The Eyes

A couple of nights ago, after the fireworks, Maria and I meandered through the adjacent fairground, enjoying the colourfulness of it all.

Fair rides

This shot of a fair ride has turned out very fuzzy... but I prefer to call it 'arty' ;-)

This shot of a fair ride has turned out very fuzzy… but I prefer to call it ‘arty’ 😉

Wheel - SideWheel - front

Ride

Girls

“Her head just ain’t hot enough for the bow to glow!”

It's probably illegal in Spain to hold any kind of festivity that doesn't involve pork legs

It’s probably illegal in Spain to hold any kind of festivity that doesn’t involve pork legs

Food

These are pickled aubergines (eggplant), and I love them! The grumpy stall holder was not at all happy with me taking this photo, so I'm doubly pleased it turned out so well :)

These are pickled aubergines (eggplant), and I love them! The grumpy stall holder was not at all happy with me taking this photo, so I’m doubly pleased it turned out so well 🙂

Mid-Week Fireworks!

Maria and I went to watch a firework display Monday night in Toledo (locally known as “La Pólvora”), and it was much more spectacular than we had expected. The pictures don’t do it justice, but seeing as it’s my first ever attempt of …erm… shooting fireworks, I’ve decided to put them up anyway 🙂

Polvora 1Polvora 2Polvora 3Polvora 4

Polvora 5

Polvora 6Polvora 7Polvora 8

Toledo’s Top Summer Spectacle: Lux Greco

Within Toledo’s annual cultural agenda, Lux Greco (the lights of El Greco) is a hugely popular event. The city puts on a fantastic show for two weekends – free of charge! – which entails the projection of a series of images  onto three historic buildings: Puerta de Bisagra, Puerta del Cambrón and Teatro de Rojas.

The images are not just random sequential pictures, but they run like short 15-minute films, different in each of the three locations, depicting Toledo’s rich history and the life of one its most celebrated citizens, the renaissance painter El Greco.

The ‘screenings’ have an amazing 3-D effect, making you feel like you’re right in the middle of the battle scenes. The whole shebang is, of course, accompanied by  a rousing sound track.

Puerta de BisagraThe picture above is the only one taken at Puerta de Bisagra, which turned out OK. My flimsy digi camera is crap in low light, and it didn’t exactly help that I was taking my snaps with one finger stuck in my right ear, because I was standing far too close to the speakers. Gave me really bad tinnitus the whole night 😦

Now moving on to one of Toledo’s other ancient town gates, La Puerta del Cambrón, where the photo crop proved much more fruitful:

Puerta del CambrónPuerta del CambrónOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAPuerta del CambrónPuerta del CambrónPuerta del CambrónAnd finally, some shots of Teatro de Rojas:

Teatro de RojasTeatro de RojasTeatro de Rojas

If you would like to see another post where Toledo does a funky thing with lights and buildings, click here.