Land of mushrooms
Essence of Soria
It is a contradiction, but when the spring or the autumn comes, especially the last one, Soria lands cease to be depopulated, at least in appearance, because people come from everywhere to pick mushrooms. There are of all shapes and species, exquisite and toxic. It´s only necessary rainy seasons and some storms in summer, that they say, to come out mushrooms.
And since there are many people who had to emigrate in the '60s, a lot of persons who live outside Soria but are aware of what happens on their land, when the mushrooms appear, they come back again. Those who are not of this land also come, as there are many amateur, like it happens with hunting, as the lands of the province seem to have become a vast hunting reserve, especially big game. Hence the roe deer and the road hazard. Be careful, especially at sunset.
Soria has not lost the tradition of pilgrimages. Many of them are hundreds of years old and still meet a good number of people. This happens in Tiermes (top right).
On August central days, the village of Pedro celebrates the holidays with successive pilgrimages, taking special significance those of the Virgen del Val, the 17th (top and middle left photo). Attendees are invited to lemonade and traditional cakes.
In Arenillas (photos below), the image of "Rompetejas" walks around the village in the second week of August, touching the wing of some of the narrowest streets.
At the end of pilgrimages are made "los banzos", with auctions that help maintaining the religious heritage of villages.
Aromatic plants distillation. Arenillas
At the end of the last century, the people of Arenillas recovered distillation of herbs, especially different types of lavender. The money that Arenillas gets from the sale of the substance is used for works on the town or for other activities.
The days of distillation is celebrated at the end of August. The people gather to mow with a sickle and a "zoqueta" as formerly, or to help in the process. The day is a feast, with food and picnic included.
Teh boiler is located by Talegones river, in which lavender flowers and water are introduced. Soon, the place was full of a scent that makes stop to anyone who comes by road. A pleasure for senses.
If you want to know more, I'll leave a booklet I did some years ago on the subject (in spanish language at the moment).
The survival of Romanesque
In times, the lands of Soria were more convoluted than now. Abderraman III, Almanzor, Garci Fernández, El Cid, Alfonso I... are part of a list of persons who staged battles between Moors and Christians. Meanwhile, people were building small churches anywhere, to raise their prayers, and they filled of Romanesque churches the Province of Soria. And the South is not an exception to this. The churches are simple, usually showing a delicious beauty and dating from the eleventh century. Circular apses, arcaded galleries, carved capitals and corbels are only part of the highlights of the Romanesque of Soria.
All of our villages, in the South, have souls Romanesque, to a greater or lesser extent. Beyond that cited before, the Brías chapel facade, the church of Caltojar, capitals and corbels of Ligos, the Arenillas church portico or the church of Lumias, in the images.