Monday, 28 April 2014

Semana Santa in Nerja

Nerja is a seaside town on the Costa del Sol (you can read more about it here). Paul’s parents rented a villa close by during the Holy Week so as soon as Paul’s brother, Chris joined the pack we all went to see yet another Semana Santa procession, the cofradía de El Salvador.

This was a strange cofradía as the setting was very touristy, the streets were lined with bars and souvenir shops. The procession was all-white in colour for the first paso, and blue/white for the Virgin’s float. The ‘main’ nazarenos’ pointy hats were covered by a lovely white damask material that kind of reminded us of table cloths.

There were many new things here. The biggest difference was in the costaleros as instead of carrying the paso on their necks, here the men were carrying it on their shoulders. They were all wearing a white shirt with black trousers and were holding each others’ shoulders. The last two costaleros were blindfolded.

They also had two llamadores, a man and a child (the role of the llamador runs in the family maybe?), both of them carrying the small wooden hammer. They rang the bell with them to signal to the men.

The paso of Jesus.

For the paso of the Virgin the nazarenos were clad in white and blue.

There was a group of women dressed all in black, wearing the traditional headdress. We thought they might be representing the widows. If anybody could confirm/contradict this in the comments section I’d be grateful.

Interestingly, the paso of the Virgin was carried by women!

After the procession moved on only the wax and the flower petals remained on the floor.

We had never seen a paso arriving back to its home church so we decided to have a look. It was truly spectacular! The two pasos were turned so they faced towards each other. There was a conversation between the men and the women carrying them, moving the pasos back and forth.

At one moment they lifted up the pasos! It was an incredible sight and everybody in the audience applauded them.

Then finally they took them back into the El Salvador church.

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