Posted by: Team McSlade | March 18, 2010

Las Fallas – burn it to the ground

Las Fallas is upon us and the fires are about to burn, literally. The small people and I went into Gandia on Tuesday and watched as crackers were set off at 2pm  and women & men filed through the streets in full old-school garb.
Think Marie Antoinette, (without the massive hair); floral, sequined billowing dresses, dudes in matching vests (white shirt beneath) cruising along through town with a band behind and a lad with a banner up front. Each group has its own La Falla (The Bonfire) which is similar to the Adelaide pageant floats; that seem to poke fun at the local government and its current failings. On Friday these get burnt to the ground.
Some in Valencia cost 60000 to 100000 Euros to produce and they burn them all! We are heading to Valencia tomorrow morning to see these bangers, so look out for an update on their extravagance shortly. 

So as we wandered the streets we saw the next wave of Basque separatists blowing crackers up. Sure, they aren’t from Basque country, their names weren’t Ganix, Igon o Xzavier (seriously, they are real names) and were actually kids from as young as 3 with a wick and a few pockets worth of fire-crackers causing chaos.
So as a good Aussie (who has had this joy banned in his home land) I took the kids to the local pyro shop and bought up big. Well fourteen euros worth (about twenty bucks Oz, or ten quid), still that got about 400 tiny crackers, 400 medium ones, a dozen smoke bombs, and six that would take off a hand, or leave one’s ears without hearing if held too close.

A couple of hours of entertainment has been had, with the kids having a near miss or two, but over all; all digits and hearing are still intact. Jo was worried – “Really?” – was the call, but it was only a dud throw by Jess, and a couple of wind-blown  launches that came too close to where we were standing, not really life threatening, but still it wouldn’t have tickled. Jo’s not sure, but I reckon our insurance would cover fire-works accidents; they aren’t ‘acts of God’. 

More  Gandia Las Fallas photos. 

Right, here is where I will pull up stumps for this Team McSlade adventure, the main event is just over 24 hours away in Valencia (head to, where at the end of the burning of ‘floats’ we get to jovially hurl abuse at firefighters at 3am (allegedly they return the attack with water-cannons). What a country.

Thanks for enjoying the adventure over a warm bowl of porridge or a crumpet and jam with a warm cuppa and if you aren’t having breakfast and reading this, next update please try it, who knows, it might help with your digestion. 




  1. Dude, I’m always eating virutal flocon du mais followed by a kick arse Moosetrackes icecream as big as a baby’s head whenever I read your blogs… though I do have the odd craving for BBQ pigs head.

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