Sunday, August 9, 2015

Cascarones and old friends

I grew up in Santa Barbara. It's a beachside town with deep Spanish roots. 

Every August, Santa Barbara celebrates its heritage with Old Spanish days. It's a week long celebration full of mercados, parades and cervezas & cascarones. 

This year, the kids and I met up with my longtime friend, Sara and her children. Once upon a time, Sara and I spent 25-30 hours a week inhaling chalk dust and picking leotard wedgies as gymnastics teammates. We haven't seen one another in almost 22 years, but thanks to social media, have stayed in touch through babies and moves. We both recently moved back to Southern CA and made a date to hit up the parade together. 

It was as though no years had passed. Picked up right where we left off and spent the afternoon catching up. 

We played at Kids World park for an hour or so and then headed to the parade route to stake our claim on a street corner. 

It was on this corner that my kids got introduced to a fiesta tradition. Breaking cascarones on fellow partier's heads and shouting "¡viva la fiesta!"

 When the egg cracks, colorful confetti flutters out and covers everything around it. I've always loved that tradition and was excited for my kids to get a chance to partake this year. 

The parade was full of flower girls, caballeros and horses. There were dancers and marching bands and all that jazz. Although we had to leave part way through --- "mooooom, I need to use a bafroom. NOW!" I think my kids caught the bug that will keep us going back year after year. On our way out, Sal insisted we buy more cascarones so he could share with his aunt Stephanie. 

After a quick lunch, we headed to my sister's office where we unloaded Sal and his cascarones for the night. He had his first sleepover at her house and continued fiesta-ing with pizza, movies, popcorn and candy til he couldn't take it anymore. 

He definitely fiesta' like there's no mañana. 

Til next year. 

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