Sunday, October 10, 2010


The good folk of Militello in Val di Catania sure know how to have a  festa and today my naval officer student Cristiano and I headed there for the Sagra del Fico d'India e della Mostarda or Prickly Pear and Mostarda Festival. 

There were stalls as far as the eye could see, selling everything from clothing to ceramics to honey but the star attractions were the parade of traditional Sicilian carts and the band of the Bersaglieri, the crack troops of the Italian Army who run everywhere.  Obviously, I could not photograph the latter but I can tell you they were a wonderful sight in their traditional black, plumed hats and, of all the bands on show, received the loudest and longest round of applause from the crowd.

All restaurants in Militello being solidly booked for lunch, we headed to Caltagirone and spent a pleasant few hours there, too.  Near the famous ceramic steps, in the Church of San Giuseppe, there is a display of crib figurines from all over the world and this year, a group of volunteers has created a nocturnal crib scene with a model train running on the "bridge" which surrounds it.  The train symbolises a messenger spreading the good news of Christ's coming around the world.  All donations from visitors go to a fund for the vaccination of Tanzanian children against malaria.

And I almost forgot: at Militello there were prickly pears on sale everywhere, from €3.50 - €6.00 per crate, depending on the size of the fruit:


James Higham said...

Obviously, I could not photograph the latter ...

You could have given it a go though, just to see if chivalry has died. :)

Rowena... said...

I agree with James, but aside from that, this looked like it was great fun to attend. I imagine that I'd be snapping away myself over those sicilian carts. And I bet you had beautiful weather too!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Mayber I should hsve, James. Hi, Rowena. It was a great festa and I'm sure you'd have loved it. It was one of those strange Sicilian days when it is neither hot nort cold, with neither rain nor sunshine.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

The prickly pear are beautiful.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Midlife Jobhunter. Yes, I love them.


View My Stats