Saturday, 17 May 2008

Dia de la Reconquista

On the 28th - 29th of March Vigo celebrated its annual fiesta of liberation from Napoleonic forces (to read more about the history of this event, see previous post).

The day begins with a re-enactment of the arrival of the French, followed by life under occupation, we then were treated to the beginning of the rebellion, that eventually leads to a city wide uprising against the hapless invaders and Vigo's "Reconquest".

In the afternoon, the market stalls are in full swing, selling all manner of local produce; bread baked in log fired ovens, bocadillos (sandwich rolls) de chorizo, sweets, lollies, honey, jamon, wine, orujo (a type of liqueur), wicker baskets, lace. There was traditional dancers, music and much more.

Nowadays, the French have invaded once again, only this time not to the sound of guns, but to the sound of business. Citroen and Peugeot have a large car manufacturing plant here and employ thousands, whilst also injecting millions of Euros into the local economy. The largest supermarkets (of which there are four); Al Campo and Carrefour are both French owned. Needless to say that there are a lot of French people who live here and throughout the day, many a Frenchman would be seen to run out of a bar or pub and shout "Viva la France", before dashing back inside, rather than waiting for a response.

All in all it's a great day out and seeing Vigo's historic quarter come alive, makes a pleasant change, from it's otherwise neglected status. Wandering the cobblestone streets was a real pleasure, as you never knew what was going to be around the next corner.


Anonymous said...

Thanks alot for making me miss spanish..sorry..gallegan food! i have to wait 4 whole months to taste it again! shame on you! ...kidding, i'll read anything and everything on Galicia, thanks for the blog and pics.

calif missing galicia

Brendan said...

Hi Lisa,

Thanks for dropping by, I don't get many comments so any are appreciated! I've been a bit slack later so will try and write more soon, with a food theme...