MY POINT OF VIEW 18 (by Tatiana Sisquella)
Aaagh!! We’re coming to that time of year (or I should say, that accursed time of year) when bangers and fireworks become undeservedly popular. We’re approaching the festival of Sant Joan (Midsummer’s Eve).
One day it would be worth looking at why there are some saints who are better-known and have the privilege of having more celebrations in their honour than others, but that’s another matter.
The subject for today is that I would like to give a few tips to those of you who are visiting our city for the first time on the night of 23rd June.
1. Invest all the money you had planned to spend on buying Mexican-style hats in the acquisition of ear-plugs.
2. If you see a group of teenagers huddled together with a lighter, don’t give them the credit of the doubt and take it for granted that they’re getting ready to smoke some dope. What they are really preparing is a personal attack against your hearing.
3. If you really like bangers, you won’t be enjoying this article, and on the night of Sant Joan you will have more fun than Winne the Pooh in the warehouse of a leading brand of honey.
This is where I bring to an end my contribution to the appreciation of the fireworks which young and old alike throw around to their hearts’ content. For Sant Joan, Roman candles, rockets, fountains and cones are all the rage…anything that produces a lot of noise, a lot of colours or that smells of burning.
In reality, this tradition of throwing fireworks originates from the custom of lighting purifying bonfires to welcome in the summer on what we (mistakenly) refer to as the shortest night of the year – the shortest is in fact that of the 21st June. Which means, then, that the real star of the evening should be Fire, which is the case in many other spots on the planet on this date, and has been for many, many years.
That’s why, if you’re in Barcelona on the night in question, I would probably recommend you to make for the sea. Have a bite to eat in some bar in the old Barceloneta district that doesn’t catch the eye too much by its external appearance, and then walk down to one of the city’s numerous beaches.
There you can make the shortest night as long as you like, and it could well end up by merging into the following day.
QUESTION: Why Barcelona?
ANSWER: Because that’s where fire burns on the water’s edge.