Sunday, December 30

donut festa day 2

The second day of the donut festival really has nothing to do with donuts. It is all about fun. The day started with a friendly football match on the beach, followed by games for the kids.
How this for simplicity: Take 40 kids on a beach, make them take off their shoes. Take shoes to other end of beach and mix up in a big pile. Divide kids into teams and tell them to go find their own shoes, put them on and the first team back wins!

The beach was nearly as busy as in the summer. Children ran around in the sand, cheeks red from the cold wind, band members in stripey shirts mingled with tourists and locals. A coconut shy had been set up with tin cans baring the faces of various locals and people lined up smiling, waiting to throw balls at relatives and friends. Others queued for pizza, broccoli and sausage sandwiches, coke and wine while others danced to the music, food in their hands.

More and more people seemed to be arriving. The beach was filling up fast, even though the wind was cold and there was nowhere to sit. Everyone was happy, staggering across the sand, greeting friends, sharing slices of pizza and glasses of wine. There were more games going on, pillow fights by two contestants balanced on a beam across the sand, a childrens game involving a fishing boat, oars with scoops tied to the ends and buckets of water, and of course the traditional festa della zeppole tug of war.

Once upon a time this tug of war was taken seriously and the teams were carefully picked way before the contest. Not any more. Last night I found myself tapping large men on the shoulders, asking them if they would join one of the teams, trying unsuccessfully to convince Carlo to join in too and even threatening to join in myself. Eventually two teams were formed, one group of seven large beefy men and one group of ten smaller young lads, mainly in pink sweaters. The contest began and the beefy guys roared and pulled at the rope, while the pink sweaters giggled and slipped, and eventually won, leaving the beefcakes sweating and shaking their heads in bemusement.

At 11pm a fireworks display lit up the beach and we slipped away, leaving the crowds behind. Now we have one evening of rest at home before the noisiest and last celebration of the year takes place...


  1. That all sounds like so much fun! Wishing you all the very best for 2008.

  2. Thank you soooo much for that post Niki. My grandmother and aunts spoke about "trik trak e botte" but this is the first time I've ever seen it. You're on a roll kid...

    Do they sing a canzone del capo d'anno too? That one I actually know...

    Aprimmo l'anno nuovo
    Co tric-trac e botte
    Passammo chesta notte
    In allegria...

    We used to stand in front of my aunt's house at midnight and bang pots and pans.

  3. How fun! Nothing like that ever happens here, I guess you have to be in Italy to experience this kind of festa. Hope you have a great New Year's Eve tomorrow!

  4. I loved reading about this! Maybe I'll plan to spend the holidays in Positano one of these years...

    Happy New Year Nicki!

  5. Love the trik trak e botte. This is too funny. I like the conductor of the clappers. It looks like he's trying to stop them and they just keep on going...

  6. Oh, and the littlest guy with the clappers must be continuing a family tradition. I wonder what those "instruments" are called?

    The music is so happy, it makes me smile. I wish we had traditions like those. The end of the procession looks like where the fun is!

  7. Oh, it looks and sounds like such fun. It is so nice for Poppy to have all these traditions to remember. I liked that shot of that handsome Italian guy ...oh, I forgot. That was Carlo! Can't wait for next celebration. Thanks Niki for the great pictures and video. It really makes it feel we are there!

  8. Thank you for the wonderful post - pictures, videos and some education. It is so nice to see heritage and culture being preserved.

    Happy New Year to you and your family.

  9. Lucy in Pickering working in TODecember 31, 2007 at 2:59 PM

    Niki it was beautiful your video!!!
    Carlo so cute at the end.

  10. Have a Happy New Year! May your 2008 be even brighter than 2007. It's six hours before the partying starts here in the U.S.


  11. Okay that shoe game is nothing short of *brilliant*. Why didn't I think of that?


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