Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Making a fool of us.

On Sunday, since it was April Fool’s Day, a friend of mine posted this on Facebook.

Mr Sarkozy offers to halve his salary if re-elected and then announces that we have been caught as “Poisson d’avril” since the French have April fish instead of fools. I thought it was rather nice; if only such things could happen.

I’ve never been very good at April Fool’s Day tricks. I think my best was convincing a first year A-level French class that they were having a surprise exam. Only when the paper fishes appeared on their tables did they realise I had caught them out.

Apparently there was a spoof report on Radio 4 about people stealing donkeys and how this was causing a problem for churches which wanted to include the animals in Palm Sunday processions. As a result, the report said, many churches were using llamas instead.

When did churches in the UK start having Palm Sunday processions? It never used to happen when I was a believer. The only processions we used to have where the Whit Walks, when the Sunday Schools paraded through the streets with their banners and all the little girls got new white pleated skirts for the occasion.

The use of real donkeys in Palm Sunday processions received comment in one of the Galicia newspapers: comment on how unusual it is for such a thing to happen.

And the Spanish know a thingor two about Easter Week processions. They do them in a big way. The square in front of the cathedral in Santiago de Compostela was packed out.

As was Puerta del Sol in Vigo.

And I think I recognise this lady selling woven palm fronds in Vigo.

Meanwhile, here in England, in time for Easter we have returned to winter and the snow is back.

This morning I awoke to a blizzard, a snow covered garden, a power cut and no signal on my mobile phone. And it’s not even April Fool’s Day any longer!

It’s probably a good job that we are planning a week in Galicia starting on Sunday.

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