13th November 2016. Pineda de Mar, Spain.

We set off for Calella along the cycle path, there were people walking, cycling and using the exercise equipment that was placed all along the promenade.  When we arrived in Calella there was an event being set up for later on, we’ve no idea what it was because by the time we came back it had finished and everything was being packed away.

We cycled as far as we could along the bay looking for the church which apparently you can’t miss (turns out you can).  On our way back we noticed a map which showed a church so we headed for that.  When we got to the square and saw an ambulance parked there we decided this must be the place we were looking for.

As luck would have it there was a café there so we sat in the square with a cup of coffee while we were waiting for something to happen not really knowing what to expect.  Soon police started wandering round and then we heard a band and looked up the street to see a throng of people in red walking along to the music towards the square.

What followed over the next hour and a half was adrenaline pumping entertainment.  We watched as everyone prepared themselves, they had very long strips of black material, one person held the end and the other person put the other end round their waist then rolled in towards their collegue until the material was very tightly bound round their waist then it was tucked in.  I noticed a lot of people pulled their collars up round their faces too.

There were 4 very large groups of people and each group  began by making a solid base of people for the next 4 to climb up on, they then interlocked their hands and the next people shimmied up the outside of them to make another layer and so on.  On the very top were two little gnats who’d clambered up the outside of all these people then one had to crawl over the top of the other one at the same time raising her hand and showing 4 fingers which apparently is in honour of the Catalan flag then they speedily slid down each layer of people and dismantled the pyramid as quickly as possible.

I don’t know how they get the courage up to climb that high.  I watched as one of the men on the second layer started shaking with the exertion of holding the tower up, I’ve no idea how he managed to hold it together until everyone was safely down.  Some of the towers had people climbing up the inside as well and when they’d formed another of the towers they took the outside layer down and left a single column of people with the little girl at the top proudly holding her hand aloft.  That was amazing but as they were coming back down something happened which caused the people to fall.  The young girl holding the little one very bravely clung on to her tightly to stop her from getting hurt during the fall but it must have been painful for her to land underneath the little girl.

By the time they got to the final tower it was getting cold and everyone must have been feeling very tired.  It looked like it was going to be an impressive pyramid but unfortunately as one of the little ones shimmied half way up the tower she suddenly got an attack of the nerves (who could blame her) and she clung on to the person she was climbing on and cried her eyes out, it must have been very upsetting for the people in the tower because their first reaction would have been to comfort her and get her down but they couldn’t move.  One man reached across so she could step on his hand but there was nothing else they could do except wait for her to clamber back down again. It was a very emotional moment for everyone, once again I say they were extremely brave people.

Once we’d left the church square we went in search of lunch and Darren noticed a little restaurant hidden behind some ornate gates on the otherside of the railway line.  Once through the gates we entered a small courtyard with olive trees and potted plants dotted around.  The building beside us was ornately painted and covered in decorative ceramic tiles.  It was a great find.

It was our second plate del dias in as many days, this one was 8.90 Euros for 3 courses (home made chocolate cake for pudding) and wine.  Again it was a really nice meal.  Thank you to everyone who told us about these deals of the day, they’re brilliant.

It was starting to get a bit chilly by the time we finished our meal so we cycled back along the seafront to snuggle up in the van and look through our photos of the amazing human pyramids.

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