It was the 10th day of walking, 3.9.2011, a rainy day, very cold since we woke up and the weather didn’t get any better throughout the entire morning. I reached Belorado along with some people I was walking with. A very small Spanish town, looking dead as all north Spanish towns during the siesta time (from 2 to 4 pm, towns are dead! Plazas are empty! And no one is seen on the streets! Those Spanish people take their rest time really seriously!
We entered our albergue, with nothing much to do, we did our laundry, started thinking about what to eat, and then decided to go out for a walk through the town to find a good supermarket to buy something to cook.
We search a lot, but we find none! All are closed down. We finally asked someone why are all the “supermercados” were closed down; and we were told it’s because today is Belorado’s Fiesta. So all the town closes down (except of course for the bars) and they all celebrate the Fiesta after siesta time in the main Plaza of the town.
Ok, sounds interesting, but we’re hungry! There is one opened shop down that street! We get there and finally find an opened shop with some pasta and canned meat balls to cook. We got them and made our lunch/dinner. And that was when we started hearing loud music coming from the nearby main plaza of the town.
We went there and started checking out the place. Cool costumes, lots of dancers, lots of kiosks selling anything and everything, many contests were being made, “Miss Belorado” of under 12 years old was proving to be the main attraction there. So we spend there some time blending with the locals, then we decide it’s time for the tired pilgrims to get some sleep, so they can walk again tomorrow.
But that wouldn’t be the case with the crazy Spanish fiestas! We kept hearing the music throughout the night, until midnight.
After midnight? I think it was the fireworks show! Dead tired to go checkout what’s happening, I kept tossing and turning in bed almost all night; except for passing out for a couple of times, just to be awaken by the sounds of fireworks or cheering of “Los Españoles”.
Apparently I wasn’t the only one having a hard time sleeping, because at exactly 5.30 in the morning the following day, when I got up to get ready because I lost hope of having a good sleep, I found everyone else doing the same.
We started walking while it was still dark. And “Los Españoles” were still partying. Now, however, it wasn’t the under 12 beauty contest, it was the above 18 (or around 15) who were all drunk and filling the small town, shouting to us “Buen Camino” as we finally left their town.
And since that night, I knew it’s a pilgrim’s nightmare to be in a town during its fiesta day.
Have a small taste of the fiesta in that 47 second video, and know what music was going on all night long!
Ever attended a Spanish fiesta? How did you like it? And for how long did it keep going?