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Tuesday, January 6th "The Cabalgada and the crazy candy chucking children; Reyes!"

On the 5th the Cabalgada de los Reyes is not to be missed, whether young or old. People line up in the streets to watch the processions of children and kings, with this year's crowd being almost as bad as some days of Semana Santa. The little children seem awfully cute in their costumes until they begin to pelt you with candy. Some are kind enough (or have practiced before) to toss candy at an upward angle so it drops easily to the people below. Others are not well coordinated and thus accidentally may wing a piece towards you at faster speeds. And I know this pains all of you children-loving folks, but a very few of those children are intentionally hurling candy at full velocity, often times towards unsuspecting parade goers. Guard your glasses and your camera carefully or they may come home damaged. In Umbrete, a pueblo nearby, I hear there was quite a parade. One of the kings was smoking and another may have had a little too much to drink. Still they threw toys and packets of olives which had many scrambling to pick them up. A friend was hit with a couple of packets of olives as he was on the phone, paying the price for not paying attention.

One note - the night of and day after the cabalgada expect your shoes to stick to everything. Make sure you take them off before walking around at home. I spoke to a person who helps organize a float for one of the kings who told me they may throw out some 5,000 kilos of candy per King during the 6 hours of the parade. Seeing the mess they leave behind makes me a believer.

We finished off the night on the outskirts of the Macarena at a great little place to eat - I must research the name and post it later. Patatas a la brava and carne a la plancha are their specialties and they do them both very, very well. Today is Reyes, and aside from opening a few gifts we plan to do plenty of nothing.