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From the title, you get the idea. La Mercé is the annual festival of Our Lady of Mercy, one of the patronesses of Barcelona. It spans a week, this year Sept. 18-24 and there are more events than one person could get to. We went to see the giants and the giant heads before they emerged. They don’t march in a parade, they dance down the street.

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The attendants are “Big Heads”

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Music is provided courtesy of the Middle Ages, a chorus of oboes, bagpipes, and other loud and squealing things.

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Maybe that’s why she carries a pig. It was part of the band!

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This was the first parade. The next parade was monsters and devils. We saw some of them in advance:

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They looked more threatening at night in the street:

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Several of the dragons, including the angry dolphin, squirted water on the crowd.

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There was a drum group with almost every dragon, a group of 10-16 people, more than half of them women. They made a wall of sound and danced at the same time, some groups more choreographed than others. Impressive.