Rainbow Festival ????| Nicosia October 2015 | Open borders, Welcoming Societies
The Rainbow Festival is the biggest anti-racism, multi-cultural event taking place in Cyprus. For seventeen years now, this event, brings together the various ethnicities residing on the island. I would call it a large party, a celebration aiming at people getting to meet their fellow humans! So, this year, under the mojo of «Open borders – Hospitable societies», KISA organised a big celebration for Cypriots and non-Cypriots, including singing, music, dancing, and traditional foods from various countries. The event took place at the Nicosia Municipal Park.
There were people from Iran, India, Vietnam, France, the Philippines, even Chile, participating in this unique festival! There was traditional dancing from countries like Georgia and Congo, foods and sweets from Vietnam, the Philippines and Syria, and hundreds of people had a great time, chatting and meeting new people and new cultures. I tasted amazing Syrian home falafel, delicious Philippino souvlaki (!) with barbeque sauce, and met various interesting people who even did me the favour of posing for pictures, all smiling!
Some wished to talk to me about their lives, their jobs and the reasons behind them being here, to our beautiful island. I met Anna, a young Italian girl living in Cyprus these past few months due to her participation in a volunteering program; I met Jeremy from France, a tennis teacher living here for the past eleven years; there was Sarita and the hilarious Louis from Chile, member of «Latin kardaş» – a music band – permanently residing in Cyprus for more than thirty years, and dozens of other people which you can see in my video at the end of this blog.
The most important thing I am taught from my travelling is to respect all people, all civilizations and cultures and everyone I come across. It does not make a difference whether that is in the depths of Anatolia or in my own backyard. Dagobert D. Runes once said that “people travel to faraway places to watch, in fascination, the kind of people they ignore at home”. He was unfortunately right. It is something I have experienced. I’ve seen this in my own eyes. It is in our hands though to change it! So, I will be waiting for everyone next year to make the Rainbow Festival! I will now leave you enjoy the sweet memories from this celebration of love, recorded via the lens of miss Golden Wings Diary!
P.S. – I thank everyone who agreed to talk (and even sing!) in front of the camera. This article is dedicated to you!