As I have mentioned before, June is a good month to be in Lisbon. Lots of stuff going on. The jacaranda trees are blooming, the Lisbon book festival is happening, and all the Lisbon/San Antonio festivities are taking place.
It turns out that the night of June 12 into the very wee hours of June 13 are especially important. That is when the big parade makes it way down the avenue Liberdade to Rossio Square. Nothing even begins to happen until 9:30 p.m. And that’s just when all the different neighborhood groups begin to congregate at the starting point near Pombal Square.
Because our hotel overlooks that particular spot, we were well situated to take in a bit of the festivities without getting completely immersed in the craziness. Michael and I made our way down to the starting area right around 9:30. We even snagged a great spot right behind the barricades. Then we began to wait . . . and wait . . . and wait. Let’s just say it took a very long time for each group to form up and then a long time passed before they began moving and then another long time passed before the next group got organized. But it was fun and it was colorful and it was, from what we have been told, quintessentially Lisbon. So, we were lucky.
We only hung around until 11:30 and there were still LOTS of groups to get going. But, even during that brief period, I managed to have my favorites. I admired the young ladies who were parading in their bare feet. I can’t imagine what their feet felt and looked like by the time they had danced their way down the parade route. The other group I was taken with must have represented the post office, big bags of mail featured in their props. It took them a longer time to get going than some of the others, I hope that isn’t an indication of how long it will take for my postcards to make it to mom.