Sunday, July 5, 2015

Il Palio in Siena 2015

On the day before the Palio of the 2nd of July, there is always a PROVA (a sort of semifinal before the big day).  There has been much preparation before this day, weeks before leading up to this most important day in Siena. In preparation, men of a contrada meet for a long lunch at  a restaurant on the spot where a few hours later there will be 10 horses racing around the track of the Campo.  The sand has been laid on the rough stones, and a few times a day is watered down by a group of workers.

The flags of the 17 contrade are blowing gently in the wind: the temperature is mid 30s.

Early on in the day it's possible to take a seat in the "reserved" sections, and just sit and watch or be watched. Later, we're asked politely to move elsewhere, where the seats may cost anything between Euro 200 and 350, depending on the spot.

This young couple may have to reconsider their allegiances The contrade are all very strong, and important events such as baptisms and weddings, are held in their own contrada..
My flag: contrada OCA, which is worn loosely around neck and shoulders.