First of all, my children are way too strong for me. I have nightmares of being found locked in a closet -- drooling and mumbling to myself in tongues -- while my children run around the house wearing torn clothing and sporting odd face paint. A pig's head on a large stick would be optional.
I mention this, because my kids are home from school all next week (starting today). Before 9:00 this morning, I was ready to crawl into any available closet (of course, this being Europe, there are no closets, and the wardrobes just aren't big enough).
Why, you may ask, are my lovely darlings not going to school? Well, that would be because of Carnivale. This weekend and until Tuesday, the Catholic portion of the Netherlands (that would be here), celebrates Carnivale -- a joyous time of frivality and silliness. Yesterday, the children's school had an all-day party involving costumes, candy and lemonade, dancing in the yard while HUGE speakers blasted out music for the entire neighborhood to enjoy.
Last night, that party spilled out onto the streets of Etten-Leur. Mainly our street, which seems to be Carnivale central. Of course, the candy and lemonade had been replaced with beer and liquor, and the cutely dressed children replaced with strangely dressed adults. Tonight the party continues.
Saturday and Sunday will be crazy. A parade will start on the other end of town and end up -- yes, you guessed it -- going down our street, where all those involved in the parade will stay and "celebrate" well into the night. Monday and Tuesday will be one big party.
Of course, we could just use my husband's description of the entire event:
It's like Mardi Gras in New Orleans, but without boobs.
Nice perspective, don't you think?