Fireworks at Cibeles for Los Tres Reyes Magos
I nearly didn't go to the parade for Kings day as it really is for families and especially for children. The parade is very impressive - lots of brightly lit floats with costumed children chucking sweets out into the crowds that lined the route. I decided to head for Colon and then walk to Cibeles. It was strange to discover that the roadworks that have plagued this area have gone and in their place was freshly laid turf for us to stand on. Turf that was soaking! I found myself standing on wet grass, dodging both low flying sweets and the grasping hands of diving children.
The object of the exercise was to collect as many sweets as possible and the best way to do this is an upturned umbrella. Children were proudly guarding their hoard while parents were enjoying reliving their youth and getting stuck in. I really liked the parade. The beautiful acrobat in white who was strung from a large bunch of balloons and twisting on a trapeze. The troupe of red giraffes who bobbed to the tune of the Can Can. The tail-swishing horses and the flock of real white geese wearing Christmas baubles. The three kings were represented by huge heads that floated over the proceedings. The event closed with a beautiful firework display in Cibeles to the accompaniment of John Lennon's Imagine. I walked along Calle de Alcala under the Christmas lights to catch my bus home and felt glad to have experienced a little more of Madrid Navidad.
So now it is all over - it seems to have gone on for a long time! Christmas in Spain is nothing like as commercial as in the UK and it has been a joy to do things differently. It was the end of a decade and time for reflection. My life in 2010 is very different to 2000.