The first glimpse of some of the iconic protagonists which will join the parade of the Santa Tecla Petita on Thursday. Today is it´s just a little rendezvous which starts from the top of the stairs leading down from Tarragona’s cathedral in to a Carrer Major packed with thousand of children.
La Baixadeta de l’Aligueta (the golden Eagle) , la Mulasseta (the Mule) , el Lleonet (the lion), els Gegants Moros Petits (the Moorish Giants) i la Cucafereta (the baby Cucaferata, small version of the big Cucafera and this blogger absolute favorite pick from the Santa Tecla bestiary) all make their way down the stairs with great fanfare and supported by their very own entourage and band. It is an endearing spectacle, surrounded by a tide of children waiting to get a glimpse of their heroes.
The Aligueta has been decorated with a crown of cardboard scissors and pins and instead of the traditional white dove placed in his beak are two fat pencils. It moves down in a throng as the air fills with delighted screams of a population which seem to have shrunken in size. The little Giants, Lion and Mule follow but the real star of the show is the baby Cucafereta which despite meaning to represent the hell of the devil look like that sort of beast that every child would be happy to adopt as a pet. It´s origin go back to 1381 when Tarragona was host to a Cucafera from Montblanc but the current version are far more recent. This squat, large beast, half dragon, half turtle with rolling eyes, is incredibly difficult to maneuver through the crowds as it tend to turn round and charge ahead, something which got the big Cucafera almost banned last year.
The convoy reaches Plaça de la Font for one last little dance and wiggle before it’s all over until the big day on Thursday. On the steps of the Cathedral meanwhile the Colla Xiqutets de Tarragona and the Xiquets del Serrallo rehears els pilars caminants (the walking pillars) which will start from the Cathedral all the way down to Plaça de la Font on the Tuesday the 24th.