One of the things I love about Spain are the Castellers. These are groups of people who make human towers. It's amazing to see them standing on each others shoulders, the power in numbers and the bravery of one small kid who climbs to the top, waves and then they all climb down. The last time we were at Tibidabo, actually the church that is on the top of the mountain there was a small competition of Castellers.
My sister in law and I were up on the balcony of the church when we heard the announcements and went to observe. Below is the group in gray shirts building their tower. The matching shirts show that they all belong to the same group. Before they started it was announced that the smallest kid who climbs to the top was making his first public climb.
|starting off...the large group at the bottom and the first circle on top|
They climb up, getting a foothold in the large black belts that are meticulously woven around each casteller before they start. It usually takes at least one other person to get this right.
|second tier is added.|
|Now the final part of the tower is added, sort of a bridge over the top two. You can see the small climber going up on the left.|
|he/she waves quickly and heads back down|
Then, as carefully as they climb up, they climb down. This is when I have seen towers crumble. It's always scary watching people fall off, however, I've never seen anyone hurt. People are always caught. You will notice that the youngest ones at the top all wear helmets, though. It is not without risk.
Because it was this castellers first climb they gave him/her a special tribute as they stood and waved on the way down and received an ovation.