Saturday, June 24, 2006

Taking Risks: Fiesta De Agua

Posted by Nithin Coca

The best things about traveling are the unexpected, random adventures. So two days ago, when I spotted a sign that said ¨Fiesta de Agua,¨ I had no idea what to expect. A Water Party? On the beach?

I grabbed the phone number slip, and headed off to get some Tapas. For some time, I completely forgot about the Fiesta.

Next scene, we are relaxing at the Mirabor San Cristobal, my favorite part of the Albaicin, the old Moorish neighborhood in Granada, admiring an amazing view of the Alhambra (pictures coming soon), with my fellow trippers and Couchsurfer Kat, when we get to discussing what we are going to do that following day.

Before I knew it, we had texted Manolo, and were going to get up the following morning to catch a bus to the beach.

What is the fiesta de agua? Good question. We were on the bus, me, Brandle, Mike, Aaron, and Kat (Mr. Ryan had to drop out due to Moroccan repercussions), when the only other English speakers on board told us we would be drenched with water on the alleys of a small village in the mountains. We had
brought no extra clothes (as everyone else on the bus had), nor had we brought a towel, due to a Spanish miscommunication (damn you Ryan for being sick!)

When we got off the bus, we were handed buckets. That´s right, Buckets. Medium sized, blue, plastic buckets. We followed the throngs (12,000 people in total) through a beautiful, green, mountain path toward a picturesque small valley town, the lights glimmering over the clear night sky. This was where the fiesta was taking place?

The crowds were amazing. The streets were packed with students, families, children, grandmas, all with buckets. From the balconies, people with hoses sprayed water down on the crowds, everyone trying to catch as much water as possible in their buckets. ¨Mucho agua, mucho agua!¨chanted the completely Spanish crowd. Within minutes, we were completely soaked with frigid water, but so was everyone else. The energy of the crowds was amazing, people were being sprayed with fire hoses, buckets, even the occasional gutter splash. The streets were running with dirty, warm water, not a single soul in the city was dry, even the hosers on the balconies were not spared the pain.

I could never have guessed when I saw that sign that I would, with 12 hours, be ambushing random people with buckets of cold water, evading super-soakers, and in general having a fantastic time. This experience, one I will never forget, could have been so easily lost had I glanced the wrong direction, had the slip fallen out of my pocket, or had Manolo never texted me back. But most of all, the experience never would have happened had we decided to take a risk. You can never get anything out of traveling unless you take chances.

All I know it...the Spanish sure know how to have a great time!

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1 Comments:

Blogger Lethaltank42 said...

Sounds like a hell of a time! Send me dl site if there is one Mike. I live in KANSAS!!!!

3:23 AM  

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