It is the time of carnavals and celebrations to prepare for the coming of Lent. A time to drink, eat and be merry before having to toe the line, a Catholic holiday. I’ve seen some of the celebrations in New Orleans and one in Nice, that city being close to Italy, and I always thought that someday I might see the celebrations in Rio de Janereo but I never thought I would see a parade complete with costumes and confetti in Switzerland. I just happened to be there visiting family during this time and we went to the parade in a beautiful city called Bellinzona to see it. This is the part of Switzerland, Ticino, that is near Italy which I’m sure led to the carnaval celebrations. Switzerland sort of puzzles me. They do have an old Swiss language but the people living near Germany speaks German, those by France French, and those by Italy Italian. It’s almost like they are suburbs of the country they are nearest. Anyway, I digress.
One of the highlights for the children was spraying that string stuff that comes out of a can. Everyone in the parade was covered with it. Here is my three year old grandson joyously spraying some on his brother’s head.
Many floats in the parade had people throwing confetti. I found some inside my clothes when I undressed that night and even some in the baby’s diaper who had been in a full body snow suit all day. It was all over the floor at my son’s house that night and I found some in the pocket of my coat when I got back to Paris.
This was the largest float based on an old Channel Perfume ad where women opened windows and yelled, Egoist, the name of a perfume. All of the performers were men. They also called it Ti-Chinel, a play on the name of Ticina.
There were several floats that appeared to be either anti-American or anti-oil based, I think, on the economy which isn’t doing that well in Europe either. In any case, I enjoyed sharing in the celebration with everyone there. And Bellinzona is a beautiful city with not one but two castles. I had never heard of it before.