Monday, 25 August 2014

The Ball in the Hole

Saturday 23rd August was the day of the marriage of Goliath and Mrs Goliath and also the birthday of Mr Fluffy. We awoke to the sound of beating drums and had seen 3 rats before 11am. That's what we get for parking next to a canal. The day was looking good so far. In the morning we took a two hour walk along the tow path and the rain came in on our way back. Happily, we were just passing an old birdwatchers' hut so were able to shelter there. We had a lovely view of a lake with ducks swimming and the rain dropping on the water.
view through a hut
We were back in time for the wedding at 3pm. One of the locals told us that it is treated as a real marriage and several dignitaries were there to attend the ceremony in the church. The giants (which weigh around 130 kilos) were paraded and danced along the street by a series of very strong chaps dressed in white. When the giants kiss the whole crowd erupts in screams of delight and enthusiastic applause.
Mrs Goliath
To view a video of the Giants' kiss click here.
Mr and Mrs Goliath
 We had to stand for a long time and a very tall chap came and stood in front of at one point. 'I think I'm standing behind the tallest person here' I said. 'Not quite' said Graham pointing to Goliath.

A little after the wedding a small boy is selected to play 'David' and to challenge the giant then attempt to throw a ball into the hole of his skirt. If the ball goes in it is considered very lucky for the town and, of course, the boy. Tension mounted as the he took aim and 'hoorah' the whole crowd exploded in applause when the ball went in. 'David' was carried on the shoulders of the attendants and some people were in tears at the spectacle. It was very moving actually and bodes well, especially for Mr Fluffy on his birthday. 
the Devil character walks in the procession

Just remembered that I embarrassed my self earlier in the day when chatting in franglais to a very lovely local chap. I had meant to say 'Ici' (meaning 'here') but managed to do my best Hercule Poirot impersonation saying 'eeeer' instead. How embarrassing...luckily he didn't seem to notice my faux pas and I managed to hide my red face and tittering behind a carefully placed hand. Must work on my French.

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