Scribbler in Seville

A colourful romería

Last Sunday was our local romería, which I’ve blogged about before. The Romería de Torrijos takes place in Valencina de la Concepcion, near Seville, on the second Sunday of October. I covered all the historical background in the previous post – the Hacienda de Torrijos, where the romería takes place, dates from Arab times.

So this year, rather than covering the same ground, I’ve picked out photos along a theme: colour. Colour in wagons, on oxen, on wheels, musical instruments, flamenco dresses. If you’re wondering what a romería is, it’s an excuse for a party when a Virgin Mary statue is taken out of its church and carried in a procession to a sanctuary (in this case, the chapel of the Hacienda de Torrijos), accompanied by most of the town, amidst lots of noise and excitement. Everyone comes on their horse, wagon or trailer, has lunch, dances and gets merry, and then she is returned to her usual location.

**Technical note: Please excuse the rubbish exposure on these photos, I still haven’t got to grips with using my camera correctly – though as any (proper) photographer will tell you, working it out so that the extremes between bright middle-of-the-day sunshine and contrasting shadow are perfectly balanced isn’t easy!**

First off we have the oxen, which pull the gypsy caravans. Huge, lumbering beasts, they are very docile and are driven by men (and women) with sticks. Their headpieces can be embroidered velvet with emblems from hermandades (brotherhoods), or made from scraps of fabric.

This headpiece is made of scraps of flamenco dress fabric – spots in every size and shade.

More traditional decoration on these ones.

Next it’s the wagons – decorated with scrunched-up coloured paper and flowers, they’re as pretty as a picture – every little girl’s dream.

Matching lemon-yellow headpieces and wagon – nice.

Love the ribbons – bring to mind an English maypole.

Then we have the tractors, which pull trailers full of young people brandishing beers, with T-shirts (and wheels) to match their transport’s colour scheme.

In the pink.

Crazy patchwork on a little trailer.

Finally, the people and the horses; the dresses, the flowers, the shawls, the hats.

This mount has a very patriotic plaited mane.

Music is an essential part of any romeria – men or women playing tambourine, flute (a small pipe) and drums accompany each wagon and trailer, while everyone sings along.

A favourite sight – women in zingy-bright-coloured flamenca dresses on beautiful grey horses. Can’t get more Andalucian than that.

I love the way this man and girl coordinate with the wagons.

Panamas to go with your flamenca dress.

Bougainvillea on the tower of the Hacienda de Torrijos.

16 thoughts on “A colourful romería

  1. Trish @ Mum's Gone To

    I know we have autumnal colours to look at here in the UK, but I’m very envious of the bright side of the colour spectrum here. Glorious, Fiona! Fave photos are the hats and the lemon yellow/green wagon.

    1. Fiona Flores Watson

      You’re right, Trish, the yellows, oranges and golds of English autumn foliage are amazing – I came over for a very brief visit last October, and was lucky enough to have a sunny afternoon – totally bowled over by the beauty of the trees driving through Gloucestershire. Colour here is on a different scale, which makes it fun to photograph. Sadly I missed a classic shot of a lady in a yellow flamenca dress (canary of course, no shrinking primroses here) with matching hat!!

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