Look at that lot...following her like a flock of sheep
I suppose one of the reasons that I experienced such a culture shock in ‘Little Britain in the Sun’ was that a couple of days previously we’d been to the Romería de San Marcos in Tegueste; an experience which you could say lay at the complete opposite end of the spectrum.
Whereas the streets of the tourist resort we’d visited were unnaturally quiet, the streets leading to the centre of this great little town, which only sees a tourist if they’ve taking a wrong turning, were packed to capacity.
We’d been to Romerías in various places before; thinking we’d seen the biggest in Garachico and La Orotava, but Tegueste’s was something else. Although this didn’t have as many carts, the ones that were being dragged by oxen through the streets were the most elaborately decorated of any we’d seen to date…and of course other towns don’t have ox drawn ships. But it was the number of people which took us by surprise; there were thousands, maybe tens of thousands, and most were kitted out in traditional Canarian costumes. There was a real party atmosphere in town and the bright sunshine made the colours on the girls’ rainbow patterned traditional skirts even more vibrant than usual.
Smiley Happy People
In the streets around the plaza movement was almost impossible; it was like taking a hedonistic magical mystery tour where the crowd took you along on a slo-mo rollercoaster ride which involved avoiding herds of goats, lumbering oxen and boats on wheels whilst happy smiley people tried to ply you with wine and force you to eat papas arrugadas and chunks of carne fiesta. There’s such an incredible buzz at these celebrations and your senses come under full scale assault. I love them; these sorts of things are part of the reason I live here.
This is what Tenerife is really all about.