I really learned a BIG ONE today. Did you know that Carnaval is from the Spanish, meaning carne val, which translates to Farewell to the meat? Which precedes Lent where Catholics give up meat? I was astounded at how logical that is.
And now I must clarify what I talked about in my last post about the parade. (Only a few days later and I have learned to much!) The parades I referred to, I now know, are for the four Sundays leading up to Carnaval (aka Mardi Gras in the US) which is March 5. That’s when they have the BIG parade.
So, what else is there to do on a Sunday when it’s 84 degrees and just lovely and the pool isn’t ready to swim in yet, and there’s a little issue with the water tank and the water supply and the electricity and you’ve already been to the Chile Cookoff…what do you do? You go to the parade!
People come running down the street pursued by men dressed up in women's clothes. Blonde and seriously red wigs seem to dominate. They stuff their dresses with balloons and/or inflatable balls to fill out the boobs and butts, bouncing around when they dance. And being real men, they fix the rips in their dresses with duct tape. It’s a riot.
What we heard from a local woman about the men and dresses and flour, is that once along time ago there was an ugly fat, crazy woman that would dress provocatively and come-on to all the men. If a man refused her attentions, she would reach into her sack and throw flour all over his head. Somehow that sounds perfectly logical to me.
And to close… I have discovered prejudice here! I cannot believe that in the instruction pamphlets for all the appliances that there is NOT an English version in the back. Can you imagine buying something with instructions in America that doesn’t have, at the very least, a Spanish version? I was rather taken aback and I felt a little… snubbed. At least there was no other version. Like French. Now that would just piss me off.