Rushing out of the carnival island
I thought that a carnival was originated in Brazil. It's completely misunderstanding.
A carnival has been existed in Europe for hundreds of years. In facts,
there are many famous carnivals in Europe like the one of Venice or Nice.
Then I looked closer at the spelling of the "carnival "once again.
And I found the word of "carnis", which means meat or flesh in
Latin. Festival and carnival, each word doesn't have the same meanings
However, the carnival style which peoples dance with rhythm of samba was
born in central and south America. European and African tradition, both
were mixed together in the colonial period.
The carnival of the Canary Islands has the south American samba style.
Euro originated culture had been transformed in Brazil and back to Europe.
Maybe we can call it "resonance of culture".
The carnival season of the Canary Islands is February. The most famous
carnival in the islands was the one of Tenerife. Unfortunately, I don't
know the carnival of Tenerife.
However I came across a big carnival in Gran Canaria Island. It's not like
the carnival which was dancing on the street like Brazil. A stage was set
up and the group was shown one after another. Each team compete for dance,
music and of course, costumes.
Many tourists came over not only from Europe but also from African Continent.
So the carnival was really animated. It seemed the biggest event through
With ending the carnival season in the Canary Islands, Brazil, the other
side of the Atlantic ocean, get into the season. What a huge scaled story
I enjoyed the carnival very much but I made a big mistake. I hadn't booked
the returning air ticket to the main land of Spain. And there was no vacant
seat at all. The seats were fully booked for whole one week after the carnival.
I had not imagined the situation because I hadn't known even existence
of the carnival itself.
"What can I do for it?" I was thinking with drinking beer in
the bar. "At the carnival plaza, I was invited by Senegalese tourists
'Why don't you come on board our ship?' So should I had accepted their
offer? But they said that they let the mother ship stand by off the shore
and landed by small boat. Generally, it is called 'Illegal immigration'
isn't it.......?" After a while, bartender asked me. "What are
you thinking, senor?" Yes, I'm a sort of person showing what I'm thinking
on my face. I described the situation.
"That's not big matter at all. Forget about it! It's a carnival today,
uh?" He encouraged me.
"Well, but I have been the Canary Islands for more than 2 weeks. What
should I do for another one week here. With thinking about my schedule
to go back to Japan, it's surely time to leave the island." However
I had no choice. I declared to prolong the stay at the guest house and
made my mind spending another one week in Gran Canaria Island.
However the good news comes suddenly. When I asked at the port, they said
there were extra tickets of ferry for the main land. And it would departure
in an hour. I booked for it and returned to the guest house quickly.
I packed all my baggage in 5 minutes, and told the old woman at the reception.
"I'm gonna leave. I got ticket for the ship" "When is that?"
"Tonight?" "My God! Tonight?" She looked so surprised.
Same to me. The situation had been completely changed in 30 minutes.
I went to the port breathlessly and took on board. Minutes after, the ferry
departed. The arriving time to Cadiz was 6:30 pm. I thought it's next day.
But it was 6:30 on the 3rd day.
I rushed out of the carnival island like this.
"Carnaval " Gran Canaria Island, Spain 1993
Eid and the New Year's Day