Santa Tecla heady weekend started of with coffe, rivers of Chartreuse and cigars at Placa del Rei – this is a traditional thing to do and a bit of a warm up to get everyone fired up.
Tarragona Blog missed the cigar and got distracted by an impromptu human tower erected to get a girl to the first floor of a building, an idea which environmentalists and fitness fanatics would approve – lifts are for wimps.
Back in Placa de la Font and every inch was crowding up for the Sounding of the Town Call or “el Toc de Pregó”, an ancient ritual in which two trumpeters played the opening notes from the balcony of the Town Hall to salute the flag of Catalonia. The town major set off a flare which sent the signal to the rocket master who proceeded to set the sky alive with explosions from the heart of the square.
After the last explosion had cleared off it was the turn of the bands and Amparito Roca, this great piece of music so quintessential to Santa Tecla, opened the march of the giants. The giants are strange historical creatures which were apparently created to bring stories to crowds who could see them from afar. Here they paraded, some looking regal, other, aloof, some sour faced, some, kings and queens, bishops and damsels, all accompanied by a strange ensemble of gnomes which seemed to come from all walks of life: aliens, fishermen, bits of Manga and bits of Disney… at Santa Tecla everything goes!