Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Carneval On Isla - Part One

Unless you've had your head buried in the sand, or don't read any other blogs coming out of Mexico, you will know that we just passed through another Karneval season here. Since I'm not Catholic, all it means to me is.....Party! But all over Mexico, it was celebrated this past weekend with a fever and gusto by the populace. Our local populace was no exception.

I noticed something totally new this year. Evidently somebody solicited sponsors. These banners were hung all around the square.

I expected the ones from big corporations, like Coca-Cola and Superior Beer Products (the makers of Sol!). What surprised me was the amount of local businesses adding their names to the sponsorship list. It was almost like seeing civic pride.

The big stage is set up in front of Municipal Palace. Chairs were everywhere to accommodate as many people as possible.

I loved this sign on the Sol beer booths. Mexican economics at its' finest.

Something else I have never seen during Karneval.

These things are set up all around the island and, for 3 pesos, you can avoid a ticket for peeing in public. First time ever that I know of.

The square was pleasantly lined with about 30 different food vendors. Tacos, empanadas, pizza, marquesitas and flan were among the favorite foods. There were also some grease wagons set up on the malecon. Doesn't it look appealing.

There were only three game booths set up. They drew a crowd though.

Many people were wasting their money, trying to get a ring around the neck of these.

But if they were successful, they got to win one of these beauties.

Notice the crowd checking out the grease food and cheater game alley.

On to the midway! Take a look at this guy on the Tilt-a-Whirl.

The actual platform that the cars sit on did not go around all that fast. To make up for that, this guy ran amongst the moving cars and gave each one an extra spin as he passed. A very dangerous job if you ask me.

And I know personally how hard he would spin each car. That's my pal Ivan next to me.

The above picture was taken just as we were starting up. After the ride, Ivan could not stand still long enough to have his picture taken. I have never seen such a white face as he had. People, that ride lasted 12 minutes! Even I had about had enough of spinning by the time we were done.

The other strange thing was that the guy who did the running around also collecting cash money from you before he started. He came around to each car and collected 25 pesos per person. I wonder why they don't just sell tickets? Did he get to keep all that cash? Does he own this ride? Questions, questions.

I didn't go on any other rides. I figured I had pressed my luck far enough. I did walk around and get some shots of the other rides that I showed you last week.

The merry-go-round.

Bumper cars!

The Dragon roller coaster for kids.

Don't know the name of this one. It travels backwards though.

Tomorrow we will take a look at the dancers. Oh, the dancers!


Life's a Beach! said...

I think I would have chosen the Merry-Go-Round! Poor Ivan! I feel his pain! Great photos Wayne!

Jamqueen said...

Thanks for the great photos, Wayne! Last year we were lucky enough to be on Isla for Carneval--everyone should try to experience at least once! 12 minutes! That's at least double the length of the ride you get at most fairs!

Babs said...

After having lived through many Mardi Gras in New Orleans and Galveston, your Carnaval looks very, very tame! No Carnaval in San Miguel.........

Anonymous said...

The rides look a bit larger and more elaborate than in past years?

K.W. Michigan said...

Well you got your money worth .. 12 mins. Poor Ivan! I would be attacking the SOL tent!

Isla Deb said...

Great "movement" photos, Wayne! But I'll have to say the grease things (whatever the heck they are) next to the French Fries look awful...they make my arteries curdle just looking at them!

Islagringo said...

LAB: if you come down at Karneval next year, I'll ride on any ride you want with you!

jamqueen: it was kindof different this year. Not as much partying, no big name band, lots of rides. And lots more food vendors.

babs: we are just a poor little island after all!

anonymous: there were definitely more "adult" type rides this year.

kw: I sure did get my $2.50 worth! I think Ivan would have lost it for sure had he drank a SOL.

isladeb: thanks. those greasy looking things were deep fried bananas.

cats-rockin-crochet said...

Very interesting and great photo's. Thanks for sharing your adventure's and your part of the world looks fantastic!

Jackie said...

Two Carnevals in a row kind of OD’d me. I think It has been five years since the last time I was on Isla at Carneval. I may be ready to go back for the experience next year.
Thanks for the great photos.

Interesting tie in. Today one of the sales reps in my office looked like she had ink on her forehead. She told me it was ashes. I have never seen anyone who actually rubbed ashes on their forehead for Ash Wednesday.

Michele in Playa said...

Our carnaval isn't set to start until this weekend. Why? Who knows!!! Chetumal was last week. Cozumel was last week. Playa??? Can't get its act together?? Aaaarg.