Holi festival is a blur of multicolored multicultural partying, dancing, and dominating people you don’t know with as much colorful paint dust as you can keep in your wee hands. Everybody in attendance embraces the spirit of the day and seems to openly and whole-heartedly love everybody: smiling, sharing laughs and appreciating well thought-out costumes
Holi has originated from a Hindu religious festival and has now become popular around the world. The aim of the day is to express freedom of beliefs and individual rights through coloring your normal life, making it bright and joyous. In India it is also a festival that nullifies castes so that all those celebrating become equal.
In Madrid it was adapted into a 5km run (hence the name HoliRun) with color stations situated around the course. Good God, let me tell you that these color stations were CRAZY. Each one was a different color and it was like a cloud that engulfed you into a powder throwing war. Our crisp white shirts didn’t stay that way for very long.
Big barrels stood by full to the brim with color dust (made out of corn flour but tasting like chalk) where you could dig in and get festive painting yourself with it, throwing it at your friends, rolling around in it on the ground, and fighting unsuccessfully at keeping it out of your eyes, nose and ears. Colorful tasting mouths and gritty eyeballs brought home the reality of this.
“I’ve been preparing for this my whole life by eating chalk as a child.”
“My mouth tastes like a rainbow”
It felt like being in a multicolored dream, different accents and languages squealing with joy around you, unseen through the dust, fellow humans just silhouettes through the haze at each station, all united in a common interest. Families and their pets, expats, Madrileños, and even those seemingly crippled were taking part (being pushed through the course in shopping trolleys). The spirit of the festival was not lost here in Madrid, and they threw a damn good party afterwards too!
HoliRun 5K Madrid:
“Our mission is to colorize your life.
We will do it with explosions of our magic powder, music and happiness.”
You will never be the same.