Yesterday was a national holiday in Italy in honor of a saint: most of Christian Italy celebrated St. Frances, but Bologna celebrated St. Petronio (patron and protector saint of the city). All schools and most stores were shut down for the day, meaning i got to sleep in past 10 AM for the first time since arriving in Italy. All day there were festivities in Piazza Maggiore and the major streets. Since i had to tutor, i didn't get around to going until 10 pm. While waiting for some friends to arrive, I watched some guy throwing fire sticks and juggling flames.
Since the fireworks weren't scheduled to start until 10:45, so we all went and got some delicious gelato on Via Zamboni before heading back to the square. We got there just in time, because as we were fighting our way through the crowd to get to the front, firework just started exploding. And, let me tell you, Bologna knows how to handle fireworks...
First of all, the fireworks were launching off the side of a 600-year-old basilica (Basilica di San Petronio). Second of all, the fireworks were exploding extremely low. At first, this freaked all of us out... I swear to God that Dru almost had a heart attack and I thought there were problems with the launchers. Nope... they just don't have regulations for firework here, obviously. It turned out to be really, really cool. It was definitely one of the coolest things i've seen here yet. Here are some pictures and a video:
|Fireworks with the Basilica di San Petronio in the background. So beautiful!|
|Sizzle sizzle, snap snap.|
|So, so, so, so BOOTIFUL!|