The celebrations for Easter in Moldova begin on Saturday night (like with all of the holidays here, they are more than 1 day. America has a lot to learn!). Anyways... how it begins is once the sun goes down, people gather for a fire. However, this isn't just any normal bonfire that you would imagine if you were out camping with friends. This is a fire made from tires (yes, it is very dangerous for both the health and the environment. They know this. In fact, the Principal at the school forbade the students from participating in this tradition, but on Friday when she asked if the students were "prepared" for Saturday, she made it clear that no discipline would happen if the students attended). So these fires happen all over Moldova. Big tires are the base for the fires, and then everyone sits back and watches (because it is ONE HOT fire!). Then, the more adventurous (and quite possibly intoxicated) men attach a chain to a smaller tire, throws it in the fire until it catches on fire, drags it out to an area away from everyone else, and then swings it up above his head. The sound it makes is incredible- as is the sight. Check out the videos and the photos for more detail.
This was supposed to last until Midnight or later (when Mass begins), but I don't think as many people showed up as usual. I was home at 11pm, just in time to catch some sleep before Mass... (see the next post).