During Valentine’s Day weekend, up in the Northern region of France is a little town called Dunkerque that held a colorful, noisy carnival filled with flamboyant costumes, disguised festival goers and an atmosphere of merriment and entertainment. This carnival goes around France that lasts from the end of January to mid-March. The origin of this festival started as a special feast for groups of fishermen before they set sail for the icy waters of Iceland to catch cod, a kind of fish that is sold for an expensive price.
When we hopped on the train from Lille en route to Dunkerque, I estimate around 95% of the passengers are dressed in flashy costumes. No matter how ridiculous anyone looked, it didn’t matter to them because that’s what made the event fun and unique. My co-exchange students from DLSU and ADMU wished we came prepared so we could blend in with them.Haha.
In this event, everyone is in full participation. Roads are closed for the parade that lasts for 5 hours – from 3:00 to 8:00 pm. Along the parade, people started chanting and singing some songs that none of us could understand since it’s in French. It turns out to be a jingle that celebrates the sailors and honors Jean Bart, a French naval commander and pioneer from Dunkerque who led France to succeed against England. Music, drums and colorful confetti were all over the place. It was a noisy, packed party!
The Ateneo and La Salle exchange students of the spring semester. Wee!