And despite the fact that it's bitingly cold here, the celebrations are in full flow. In case you weren't too clued up on what carnival actually is (I wasn't), it's a celebration that occurs just before lent begins, and is particularly popular in areas with large Catholic populations. So while we fry up a few pancakes and gorge ourselves silly, Italians go all out with elaborate masks and big processions. The best known places to see a great carnival celebration in Italy are Venice, Ivrea (where they launch oranges at each other...be careful of that one) and Putignano. The latter is actually down here in Puglia, and attracts thousands of people every year.
Down here in my small town, the celebrations may be on a much smaller scale, but the carnival spirit is still rife. Children, teenagers and adults alike don silly/outrageous/garish costumes, chuck confetti everywhere and spray whipped cream at each other. There are parties, feasts and of course, processions. We happened to stumble across this little one yesterday:
|I bet those panda costumes were actually really warm...|
|You can tell my town is agricultural...|
|And of course, there's a conga line.|
|I think one of these is supposed to be Berlusconi...|