Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Bambino Barce Brachot

As the slight chill of fall began to descend on Arenzano and we recovered from our first week back at work after that luxurious vacation, Trofie Wife was certain to stay on top of all local events that merely required a short jaunt out of the apartment. As we learned during our first week in Arenzano last settembre, the feast of the Bambini di Pragha (he of the large cathedral/seminary behind our house) is the first week of September, and the town is all aflutter with various minor celebrations leading up to the big event. The Sunday prior to the feast is the annual blessing of the boats and fishermen. The priests become captains for the afternoon, commandeering the faithful with their always trusty megaphones (while the land lubbing faithful and other onlookers watch from the shore), sailing between Genova Voltri and Arenzano, spraying blessings and song into the sea. Since the invention of scuba diving, they’ve managed to send down a diver to place a rosary on the statue of the Madonna di Aggugina, which landed there after some sort of wreckage many years ago; it’s possible that other things get sent down there for blessings or blessings are retrieved from below, but Trofie Wife isn’t totally certain. As an added bonus, footage from the diving is projected onto a screen near the harbor; gotta love technology!

Here’s our own photographic footage from this event:

The locals await the boat. 

The boat approaches.

 I padri spout blessings from their megaphones. 

The barce brachot seemed mainly to attract the older set, but it was nonetheless well attended (probably because the older generation is incredibly well represented ’round these parts). It was a beautiful sight on the harbor as the sun began deliberating a descent, although it was bittersweet as sailors realized that they’d be on involuntary shore leave for several months, a point further emphasized by the beach clubs embarking soon thereafter on the task of dismantling the cabanas.

Baci e gelato,
Martello e Trofie

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