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Seville Feria: a picture post

April 22, 2013 – 1:44 pm

Three flamencas enjoying a sunny afternoon at the Feria de Abril in Seville, which finished yesterday. The striped tents behind them are casetas, for eating, drinking and dancing.

portada

The Portada for this year's Feria was inspired by Plaza de España, one of the city's most famous monuments.

The 1,000-odd casetas are being desmontado (taken down), the carriages are being loaded into trailers to be towed back to their owners’ houses; the recinto is busy – not with ladies in their frilly flamenca dresses, magnificent carriages and proud Spanish stallions, but with all the activity which follows a week-long party for thousands upon thousands of Sevillanos, Andalucians, Spaniards and those from further afield. Packing up and going home.

This year’s Feria de Abril was marked by its fantastically good weather: the sun shone every day, all day, with not a drop of rain – the first time I can remember that happening. No mud on your dress or shoes, no huddling under the portada to escape showers, no shivering under a shawl as the evening turns chilly.

A pretty pink parasol provides much-needed shade from the fierce Seville sun - the Feria enjoyed superb weather this year.

If you’ve never been to Seville’s Spring Fair, just imagine a village of private parties, which you can get into if you’ve been invited, and if the person who invited you isn’t out visiting a friend in another caseta. There are ferias in other towns all over Andalucia, but Seville’s is the only one with private casetas – most have doormen, who range from friendly to neanderthal. As a host who wants to keep out the riff-raff, that’s perfect; as a visitor, it can seem exclusive. It’s our party, and you can’t come – unless you know the right people.

At night, the Feria becomes party central, with feriantes packing the streets.

Next up are Jerez’s Feria de Caballo (Horse Fair), 6-12 May; Cordoba’s Feria, 25 May-1 June, both of whose casetas are almost all open to the public; and also the Cordoba’s Patios Festival - 8-19 May.

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