Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Carnival in the Capital

For years I've seen pictures of the Notting Hill Carnival and been in awe of the amazing costumes and the sight of thousands of people dancing their way through London, so this August bank holiday I decided to follow the enormous crowd and join in myself!

For those who don't know, the Carnival is based on the expression and celebration of Afro-Caribbean cultures and traditions, originally being used to reduce racial tension and avoid rioting in the '60s, and has grown into one of the largest street festivals in Europe!

After having the post-holiday blues for a long time after I got back from Magaluf last month, it was great to get back into a party spirit, with the beautiful sunny weather heightening the Caribbean atmosphere! It's easy to forget that you're still in England as you bob along to the heavy bass of the sound-systems, Red Stripe in hand, surrounded by waves of people in brightly coloured costumes, and every street you wander down is lined with food-stalls selling Jerk chicken. It's surreal to say the least, especially when you find yourself tripping over a coconut on the pavement, but that's what makes it so brilliant!   

Yes, there was a shameful amount twerking and grinding, but that just defines the care-free spirit that the Notting Hill Carnival is all about. To be honest, it was great to see such a huge amount of body confidence and everyone looking so smiley!

It's sad that so many people seem to overlook the meaning of the Notting Hill Carnival, instead focusing on the negatives surrounding it, but when even the police start having impromptu dance-offs amongst the crowd (watch the video here), you can really see the happy buzz! It just goes to prove how music can truly draw people together, no matter how different their cultures. 

Wake up and live"
          - Bob Marley -          

Beth xxx

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