Las Lágrimas de San Lorenzo

Candles in Rodalquilar

The Tears of San Lorenzo is the name given by the Spanish to the meteor showers that occur at this time of year, during the feast of San Lorenzo. The meteors, known as the Perseids because they appear to come from the constellation of Perseus, in fact originate from the comet Swift-Tuttle, the tail of which which passes close to the Earth’s orbit every August.

Candlelit pavements of Rodalquilar

There is no better place to observe them than from under the clear black night sky of Andalucia and last night Rodalquilar celebrated the event in style with a ‘Night of Music and Candles’. To minimise the effects of light pollution, a blackout was imposed and the village was illuminated instead by 2000 candles in the windows, doors and streets.

Entertainment for children

Entertainment was also laid on for the night. We sat outside the restaurant Samambaia in one of the little squares where first the children where enthralled by a very good female clown.

The band

This was followed by a small brass band which began with a rather ponderous and nervous rendering of the overture from ‘Lohengrin’ and ‘The Anvil Chorus’.

The crowd enjoying the music

After this, they began to play lighter pieces with which they seemed much more at home, and the audience responded with enthusiasm.

Candlelight above the terrace of Samambiai

At Samambaia we enjoyed a delicious meal of salad followed by Kefta. By candlelight, it was difficult to see what the ingredients of the salad were, but there was an assortment of crunchy vegetables, olives and pine nuts and the delicious dressing was flavoured with miel de caña (sugarcane syrup) which Spanish chefs use a lot to impart a rich flavour to marinades and dressings. The kefta were served on skewers, exquisitely flavoured with mint, and accompanied by a fruity salsa with fresh ginger and couscous with pine nuts and moist raisins which had been soaked in orange. Digby indulged in a scrumptious desert of creamy trifle with walnuts extravagantly laced with alcohol.

Streets of Rodalquilar after midnight

After our meal, we wandered down the candlelit village streets, which had been closed to cars. Hundreds of candles lined the kerbs of the pavement and the scent of jasmine and stephanotis from the gardens was almost overpowering in the warm night air.

Trio in the street

We came across this charming trio and stopped for a while to listen to them.

Charming cellist

We enjoyed their music more than the band.

We did not see any meteors but from our isolated cortijo we have spotted some this week streaking across the black night sky. Mostly, they appear like fleeting flakes of snow but, sometimes, you see dazzling green ones low on the horizon.


About Margaret Merry

I grew up in Falmouth, Cornwall, England where, after leaving Falmouth High School, I spent a year at Falmouth School of Art. Then followed three years at Hornsey College of Art in London where I obtained a Diploma in Art and Design. I then spent a post-graduate year at the West of England College of Art in Bristol where I gained an Art Teacher?s Diploma and a Certificate in Education of the University of Bristol. I lived and worked in Truro for over 30 years and became one of Cornwall's most popular artists. My paintings have been exhibited in New York, Tokyo, Paris and London and have been bought by collectors from all over the world. I have published 4 books which became local bestsellers - 'The Natural History of a Westcountry City', 'Margaret Merry's Cornish Garden Sketchbook', 'Sea & Sail' and 'Tidal Reaches'. In 2002 I moved to Spain and now live pn a small farmer the town of Alhabia in the Alpujarra Almeriense in the Province of Almeria. I now get my inspiration from the dramatic scenery of Andalucia and its old cities, towns and villages which I usually capture in watercolour. I also enjoy portraiture and figurative art, particularly nudes and dancers. For these paintings I use artists' soft pastels. I have written and illustrated 3 children's books - The Wise Old Boar, The Lonely Digger and The Adventure of Princess The Pony - which have been published in the USA.
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One Response to Las Lágrimas de San Lorenzo

  1. Angela says:

    Looks magic.

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