Carnival 2011 in Colindres – Angels and Demons

March 04, 2011 By: erik Category: Colindres, Offspring, Photos, Spain 508 views

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Carnaval 2011 - ColindresA few weeks ago, we received a letter from Nora’s daycare that read something like this:

On Friday, March 4, we will celebrate Carnival and go on a parade around town with all the other daycares and schools. This year the children will be dressed up as demons (very appropriate) and the educators and parents and grandparents will be dressed up as little angels (which is what we are).

When I commented to the daycare boss how much I appreciated her sense of humor, she thanked me and said that she’d actually received one complaint from some schmuck about calling her daughter a demon. Jeez.

A few days ago, we’d been given Nora’s demon tail to be sewed onto a pair of trousers, and been instructed that she wear the darkest clothes she has. Here-in lies the problem with celebrating Carnival in the northern hemisphere: it’s bloody cold in February and early March! So either you wear your coat over your costume and no one can see your costume, or you are cold. One of the many things that was well done about the way our daycare organized things, was that the costumes were made of plastic and designed to be worn on the outside of your coat.

Nora and I got up a little earlier than usual, had breakfast and headed to daycare, I with long underwear and white clothes, and Nora with her tail. Upon arriving, we found lots of kids and parents in various stages of costume. I dropped Nora off in the kids room and I went to the room where the adults were getting painted, winged, and haloed.

Once in costume, I began my official duties as The Official Daycare Photographer, snapping photos of all the kids. I was told to be sure that I got a shot of every single one. I did my best. At first it was easy to get good portrait shots of the kids because they were fascinated by my camera and would stare blankly at it the way children that haven’t learned the “it’s not polite to stare” social norm do.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

This gives a sense of the chaos of little demons.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

My little demon.

Eventually the costumed parents and kids were led outside. At these preschool daycare facilities, they only have kids between 6 months and 3 years old. The way it works, apparently, is that the three year olds are trusted to walk for the entire parade, and they are held together by a rope with handles on it. The two year olds are generally pushed in something, and the one year olds are in their individual strollers. This year, they had designed a wonderful little trailer for the two year olds to ride in.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

The two year old trailer.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

At first, Nora was not at all pleased to be placed in the trailer, but she soon got used to it and even enjoyed the ride.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

The three year old devils.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

A trailer full of little demons.

Just like last year, we walked to another daycare and waited for the kids to come out of that one. Because our daycare boss, Adela, is so incredibly efficient, we always get there a little early, and the other daycare is always running a little late. The costume theme for the other daycare was this bizarre nondescript Persian Aladdin-esque look, no where near as imaginative, well-executed, or smile-inducing as our theme.

We then continued on to the town church square, where we waited for the kids from a local primary school to arrive. They were dressed as what I was brought up to call Native Americans. All the stereotypes were in play, with some seriously elaborate costumes. I was quite impressed.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

One little, two little, three little indians… This is Elias, the son of Nora’s hair stylist, Ana.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

The teachers wore little infant dolls on their backs. Creepy.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

Another school must have let the kids vote, because they were all dressed up as Sponge Bob Square Pants.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

Yet another school of older children were dressed as doctors and were made to carry around dolls in stretchers. Bizarre. Hair nets, smocks and mustaches (because all doctors are men, don’t you know?). It was a pretty lazy effort compared to our daycare.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

A woman I know from around town was kind enough to offer to take a photograph of me. Mighty angelic, don’t you think?

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

Nora and me.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

This is Adela, the daycare boss the organized us all. She said there were fifty kids and thirty parents that participated from our daycare. The tails, horns, wings, and halos were purchased, but the rest of the costumes were handmade by the daycare employees. It was very, very well done.

Once all the schools had merged, we all paraded about 200 meters to a central square in town and walked around its circumference a few times while the town’s DJ, a guy that handles the microphone at all the local events, commented on our costumes and generally herded us around. There was music and dancing for a few minutes, and then it was time to head back to daycare.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

A costumed portrait of Nora back at the windy daycare yard. Probably a good idea to just draw on the pitchfork rather than actually arming the children with barbed tridents.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

All the daycare workers: the angels that made it all possible.

Carnaval 2011 - Colindres

Back at home, Nora ate about three times her normal lunch portion and promptly zonked out; she’d had a full and exciting morning of fun.

I must admit to not enjoying last year’s Carnival celebration that much, but I enjoyed this year’s immensely and I’m looking forward to next year.

For now, though, I’m going to give up wearing costumes for Lent.

All 194 photos can be seen here in thumbnail or slideshow format.

 
  • http://rainypamplona.blogspot.com Mother Theresa

    Loved it! Nora’s daycare definitely wins pitchforks down on the costumes, the angels and demons idea was brilliant, much better than the others, although I’m sure the Sponge Bob kids loved their costumes. What a lot of work they must put into this. In Pamplona, carnival isn’t as much of a big deal, and while the kids do dress up, usually each comes in a costume brought from home. Looks like you guys had a great time.

  • http://www.kramblings.blogspot.com Kristin

    What a delightful start to my day! How freaking cute are those wee demons?! Love it. Very much.