Saturday, June 24, 2006

So many ppl hit on me... my head hurts!


During the night of 23rd June to 24th of June the region of Porto honours Saint John (São João) w/ a crazy party. The whole city is filled w/ people who run around w/ plastic hammers and hit each other on the head.
I didn't believe it either until I actually saw it. Fortunately the habit to smash people w/ a chain of garlic seems to have gotten out of fashion. Eventhough it's totally crazy it's fun, too! Some people will even lower their head when you are about to attack them w/ the plastic hammer whose pipe will release a menacing "deng!". Let's admit it! It's great to have a day (or a night) on which you can so something totally stupid... and everyone takes part! "Deng!" you got hit on, you giggle, the attacker grins. Some people even asked me to hit them, and then they thanked me for it. Seems like Oporto people believe that hitting someone gently on the head will bring him/her luck.
Just like during the Queima das Fitas (see entries) you hit finalists on their hat three times.
During São João some people would also put a weird flower right into your face. (Just don't ask, I don't know the answer).
And they let balloons w/ light in it fly into the air until they burn and crash. (I asked my dad whether that has something to do w/ dead ancestors, souls, etc. but he didn't know).
I started the night w/ my dad in some close neighbourhood in Gaia where people were partying w/ their neighbours, a little band played, ppl danced.
At midnight there was this never-ending fireworks at the Golden River which I watched from the Vila Nova de Gaia side. It even had background music. I swear I was there new year's eve 2004/new year 2005 and the fireworks was minimal whereas last night Oporto seemed to blow all its money into the sky during those 20 minutes (or was it even more?).
When after the fireworks I made my way to the other side of the river - Oporto - I thought while walking on the bridge "Damn! I haven't had a drop of alcohol... why is the ground shaking and I can't walk on a straight line??" Too many people were using the bridge at the same time where normally cars would cross and just a few pedestrians at the sides.
There was a Brazilian concert near Piolho, Cedofeita (Praça Gomes Teixeira?). In the sound shadow of the concert at a foutain there were hippies playing African drums, dancing African dances (made me think of N. ...), I watched them for a while and walked the rest of the way back home. There was a Portuguese concert at Casa da Música.
I liked São João a lot. It seemed that the barriers of "me" and "them" faded.
Unfortunately I didn't have my camera w/ me so I can only show you a photo of my hammer :)).

my b-day // Portugal-Iran

::: Made with CoffeeCup : Web Design Software & Website Hosting :::