Marching in Carnivale
In July 2009 we participated in St Lucia's annual Carnivale which culminates in a 2 day march through the streets of Castries. With the help of our local friend CJ we made prior arrangements to join "Mas Action", one of several Bands of revelers comprised of many hundred people each. Arriving a week beforehand, we got to know Carnivale culture and our fellow Band members at preparatory meetings and parties. Mas Action represented the theme "Castries Market", and our bulls and chickens marched the circuit from sunrise to sunset both days behind trucks filled with speakers blaring soca music. We found relief from the heat in several brief soaking rains - and in the water and Piton Lager also plentiful on the trucks! Bands compete in different categories judged by onlookers along the route and by a panel of dignitaries waiting for a "show" each time the Bands pass though the town square.
By Polly Hooker
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