Luciana Johnson p.8

For my final comunidades, I listened to a podcast about "La Tomatina". La Tomatina is a festival near Valencia, Spain and people gather to throw tomatoes just for fun. During the podcast, they talked about how you have to use tarps to cover up part of the houses on the street that the tomatoes are thrown and also how there are rules to this game. For example, the tomatoes have to be squashed before they are thrown and after the second notice that indicates the end of the tomato hurl, you cannot throw any more tomatoes and you may not throw any other objects besides tomatoes.

The first event of the festival is called, "palo jabon", and the goal is to climb a greasy pole to try to get the ham off the top while the crowd is being sprayed with water from hoses. After someone gets the ham off of the pole, the tomato fight can begin. Big trucks roll in carrying tomatoes from Extremadura, where they are less expensive, into the "Plaza de Pueblo", where the hurling of tomatoes takes place.

I learned that after the tomatoes are cleaned up, the streets look extremely clean because of the acidity in the tomatoes. I also learned that in order to participate in the festival, you have to buy a ticket and they sell about 15,000 tickets to foreigners, and 5,000 to the residents in Bunol who wish to take part in their hometown festival. I also learned that the festival has existed since around 1945, yet nobody is exactly sure why it started. There are many theories about the origin such as a local food fight started it or it was a practical joke on a bad musician or during the "Little Rabbit Parade" people threw tomatoes at the animals so they would stop eating all the watermelon and one accidently hit a person so the people started throwing tomatoes at each other and it just evolved into a tradition after that.  

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