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The most familiar monkey returns and without a mask

The good temperatures accompanied those who were encouraged to comply with the tradition of eating the Easter Mona outdoors. With no obligation to wear a mask or limitations on the number of people who could gather, parks and green areas once again looked similar to what they did before the pandemic.


This Sunday was, for many families, the monkey of the reunion. This is the case of the Ibáñez-Gallardo, a clan of more than twenty people who have not met in full for two years due to Covid-19, which was even charged to their traditional mass Christmas gatherings. They live in different municipalities of the Camp de Tarragona, but at eight in the morning the advance party had already arrived to take a seat at a table in the shade in the Parc del Francolí, which became, as in pre-pandemic times, one of the places favorites in Tarragona to spend the day. As always, the grandmother of the family was the one in charge of organizing the food that each one brought and that no one was too distracted by the time.

The tables in the park began to be occupied very early, although as Luis, a neighbor who lives across the street, noted, the furniture and litter bins in the picnic area are beginning to need “urgent rehabilitation.” Some bench has been ripped out and the tables have holes and burns. Also, when you turn on the automatic watering, the base fills with mud.

This Sunday’s day also marked the return of groups that have been celebrating this day in the park for years, such as several families from the Philippines: the Caguimbal, Aban, Tabao, Miguel and Forte. At his table there was no room for one more tuper with typical dishes, from pancit (rice noodles) to colorful puto (rice flour cakes). Like other immigrants, they say that the tradition of eating the mona in the open air is one of those that they have adopted with more enthusiasm as soon as they arrive in Catalonia.

Something similar explains the Giraldo-Marín, from Colombia, with a homemade monkey full of details in the decoration. A few steps further, another group that included, in addition to Catalans, Argentines and Chileans, pointed out that, when you have children born here, the mona is one of those traditions that no one wants to miss. “It gives joy to finally see people enjoying themselves,” they commented.

Although not everyone got up early to take a seat. The Garcias admitted they were less concerned because they have purchased a good-sized tent for these occasions that they pitch anywhere. The Francolí seemed to them this time the best place.

In addition to this park, another of the places that was once again populated by families (although less than in times before the pandemic), was le Pont del Diable. There the Pérez-Santiagos say that they have spent years setting up the table in the same place and that they have appeared more than once in the press. Paula, the only girl at the table, shyly shows the monkey that her grandmother has made for her along with the one that her godfather gave her with a figurine of Mirabel, the protagonist of the film Charm.

Very close by, the Rodríguez-Almela family, at the time of taking the photo, realized with laughter that, precisely, they had left the monkey. However, the matriarch, Mari Carmen, played down the matter and said that “the important thing is to get together, finally.”


At the table of the brothers Manuel and Josefa Cortés, around one o’clock in the Boca de la Mina de Reus, between plates of roast chicken and salad, a portion of mona was already missing. “We like the area and, since it has been fixed very recently, we have decided to come,” she said. And the fact is that “sometimes we walk around here with the dog, who also enjoys it, everything is very nice and it seemed to us that it was going to be a good place”, added Manuel, who commented that “other years we did not usually go out, we stayed in home, but we wanted to try and the good weather has finally convinced us”.

This has been the first April after the comprehensive renovation of the promenade – to which the Jardí Agrari and the Parc de les Olors will soon be added – and its appearance has attracted many back to this place in the city where Easter was traditionally celebrated. .

Also for this reason, sitting right next to the sculpture that commemorates the historic Venedora d’Anissos, Judit García and her son Juan drank the sandwich. “My brother works, my mother had knee surgery recently and we can’t go far, so we’ve come here to spend some time with two pieces of mona in a tupperware,” said the woman, who explained that “we come many Sundays because it is a very quiet and very beautiful place and, since they have updated it, it is very good, but you have to arrive early if you want to get a table». “Now we get our strength back and make our way back,” she pointed out, also in the company of her pet, and commented that “other times, we went to the Riudecanyes reservoir, but this year we have changed.”

Another new scenario in which some thought to spend the day was the Parc de Familias, although most were surprised when they arrived. The built-in barbecues that were on the site have been removed, there is a runa container and a half-installed fountain, and the picnic area is no longer there. For this reason, some families improvised the picnic on pingpong tables or bringing the belongings from home.

It was the case of Alberto Rocha and his people. “It’s about, more than anything, spending the day outdoors, with family and friends, with children and all together, and doing something different now that the heat has started,” he explained. This Sunday’s was his first foray into the park “after they spoke to us very well about it”, since “previously we used to go to El Morell, where there are barbecues and we had a good time”, and “it has caught our attention that here there are none and everything is a bit empty».


In Cambrils there were many who took advantage of the pleasant temperatures to spend the morning on a beach, sunbathing or playing in the sand, and even the bravest taking a dip, to then celebrate Easter Monday with family and friends.

This was the case of the Massana Gallardo, a family that rushed through the last day of the Easter holidays before returning to their native Lleida. They have an apartment in Cambrils and the classic custom of eating together in the Llosa area. Specifically under the pines and olive trees that are next to the Roman site, right in front of the Paseo Marítimo de Poniente of the municipality.

It is one of the busiest spaces, and this Sunday was no exception. Despite the fact that the bustle of the previous three days was gone – the local hospitality sector far exceeded the most optimistic forecasts – dozens of people gathered, with tables and chairs, refrigerators with soft drinks and everything essential to eat in company. And for dessert, of course, could not miss the monkey that the godparents had given to their godchildren.

  • Tradition
  • monkey
  • Gastronomy
  • Holy Week
  • Reus
  • Cambrils

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