Part 22: Sevilla Day 4: Feria de Sevilla


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The Trip

On our entry to Sevilla we had seen signs for the "Feria" without knowing what it was.  A little work with Google Translate told us that it was "a fair".  My frame of reference is uniquely American so I immediately thought "county fair" with animal, junk food and rides.  Oh how wrong I was.  We were told that taxis would be in short supply and told further that it was something that we should do without fail since we were in town.  So when fair day came, we laced our shoes and headed out.  None of us were prepared for what we would encounter:  the hotel staff did not brief us, nor did we inquire, we just went.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

Right outside our hotel we spotted this rig which caused us pause.  We had seen horse-drawn carriages, but nothing this fancy.  Particularly since the attendants were in dress.

Next we started encountering waves of gals dressed to the nines.

The theme is Flamenco and the tight, ruffled dresses were the order of the day.

We crossed the river and then headed west toward the fair grounds.  The closer we got, the more carriages we encountered, each seemingly more ornate.

We turned the corner and ..... whoa!  A literal river of people on foot headed for the fair grounds.

I stood on a bus bench and shot a photo looking the other direction.  Note the attire -- this is a formal fair.

The entry portal.  Access was free.

Once inside, we saw riders, carriages, folks in period costumes and all formal.

There were seemingly hundreds of carriages, each loaded with nicely dressed passengers, many holding glasses of sherry in their hands.  All the carriage drivers were in formal attire.

I chose some random women and asked if they would allow a photo.

Suits, ties and formal attire.  This was a nice carriage.

These horses were perhaps Percheron, but too small for Clydesdales.

The precession of carriages just kept coming and coming.

This team is fighting, pushing against one another and nearly falling in the process.  Note them leaning into one another and the driver on the cell phone.

This is a team of 5 with 3 in front and 2 in the back.  The numbers on the carriages seemed to suggest perhaps there was a judging competition, but not all carriages had numbers.

While there were common themes in the costumes, each was different.

A lot of the teams had bells on them as a way of saying "look at me".  Not unlike a loud Harley today.

This fellow was a one-off for a bunch of reasons.  First, it was a two wheel carriage.  Second a one man driver and third he was in military garb.

This team had knitted ear shields that prevented the bugs from getting in the horse's ears so they did not spook.

White and dappled grey horses.

Period garb, although the girls did not look too happy.

Another shiny coach and mounted riders.  This was not a formal procession, but rather in appeared to be a "see and be seen" event.

Period garb and a side-saddle rider.  Ladies do not spread their legs on the horse's back.

Along the route were little casitas that had food and drink.  This one was a public casita, most of the others were sponsored or private.

The hardware just kept coming and coming.  I am guessing that there were hundreds of carriages and teams.

Some of the riders dismounted to get some sherry.

The inside of the public casita was a mad house.  The local news was there covering the events.

Many of the mothers dressed their daughters in costume.  It had to have cost a ton.  There were so many folks, we postulated that most of Sevilla was there.  A whole-town costume ball.

This was a serious event.  The city had a fleet of trucks that were driving around spraying the streets to keep the dust down.  The dirt walkways had been moistened earlier in the day to prevent dust.  Behind the sprayer was a sweeper to remove the horse droppings.

This was one of the few female drivers I saw.  She was pretty, but not too pleased about me taking her photo.

The whole clan got into costume for the event.

The topper was this team of miniature horses and children drivers.  The carriage was scaled to the horses.

On our exit we encountered waves of gals dressed in costume coming into the plaza.

As we crossed over the Rio Guadalquivir we spotted this garbage scow docked on the river front.

As we got close to the hotel, we spotted the conveyance for the horses.

There were a number of these rigs parked on the main street.  These trucks are expensive and I can only guess that the carriages are as well.

The Sevilla Plaza de Toros.

Mere words do not do this event justice.  The chaos of folks on foot and horses and carriages is hard to describe.  There seemed to be no pattern to the motion, but it was continual in nature.  It was totally different that an American county fair.  There were rides, but we avoided that area as we had see those rides in America.

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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2017, all rights reserved.
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