Saturday, February 25, 2012
Last week was CARNAVAL! In Ecuador, the people celebrate the four days leading up to Lent/ Ash Wednesday. Lots of families head to the beach to play or to the mountains to visit relatives. Monday and Tuesday were days off work. Tons of the stores on our street were closed. What do people do on these party days? Have water fights and attack each other with paint! Ah! In Monte Sinaí, it became a common sight to see kids and adults walking down the street soaked from head to toe or with different color paint staining their faces and clothes. Kids staked out the sidewalks with water guns or water balloons to throw at cars with open windows. People in the back of pick-up trucks drove around dumping buckets of water on innocent passers-by. Lots of little blow up pools were inflated and filled with kiddos and parents. The public pool was PACKED and patroled by plenty of police. The more hardcore people played with the dirty puddle water or with eggs or mud. (I am NOT hardcore, mind you). But I did play! We had 11 high school boys in town from St. John´s Prep, so we joined in on a huge battle and lunch with youth group after Mass on Sunday. We all ended up looking like zombies, our faces caked with green and black paint. What a riot! And on Tuesday, the most loco day of all, we played in the street with Mónica´s family and some other neighborhood kids, soaking each other with little buckets of water and rainbow color paint. Maybe not the best way to conserve water, but it was wonderful to participate in such a fun cultural experience! Hopefully I´ll be able to put some pictures up soon! :) Happy Lent to you all!