It was a public holiday here in Brazil on Tuesday earlier this week. Scores of people went away for a long weekend, businesses closed for several days, there were much less cars on the road and then people started piling up firewood in the roads. For the past couple of weeks now, I noticed stacks of firewood on the pavements in front of people's houses but thought nothing of it. Unnoticed these piles of firewood grew in size into formidable heaps and the reason became clear late Tuesday afternoon. We noticed many families all moving the firewood from the pavements into the roads, they were clearly intend on making fire. But why and for what reason?
We returned to the streets early that evening and found that these piles of firewood were burning, music blaring everywhere, parts of the road were blocked off, people were sitting around in groups all along the road, celebrating and partying, drinking and lighting fire crackers. We then learned that the local market sold huge truck loads of corn cobs (called "mielies" in Afrikaans) the past few days. As we walked down the road, most of the fires burned with intense heat and some were fairly close to the houses. All along the road, we noticed corn cobs and some people were already toasting them in the fires. We took a couple of short videos as we walked down the one road - here is our compilation.