ALAF! During this cucumber season, let’s get acquainted with the Zottegem Carnival group LOS BOMBEROS. Who are they ? Wat are they doing ? What drives them ?
I went to look for them. Am I now Jambers or Luc Alloo? In 2016 Zottegemnaar Dirk Van Herzeele became prince carnival East Flanders. During that period he was often present at carnival processions. At one of them, in Olstj, he saw the ‘light’ ‘burn’ (remember this). To set up a carnival group in Zottegem with the theme FIRE DEPARTMENT. LOS BOMBEROS, Spanish for fire brigade, saw the light of life. (My Spanish is limited: sisi seniorita, dos cervezas por favor, olé, olé) Dirk bought a fire truck. Because oldtimers and carnival, those are Dirk’s hobbies. We can actually talk about passion.
Unfortunately, it went up in flames in 2018. Apparently it has everything to do with fire and such. It will soon be too hot under my feet. Don’t worry, he bought another van with more than 300000 km on the clock. He had the engine ‘overhauled’, so in principle it is good for a lot of bulbs again. See photo 1. The group got bigger and bigger and currently Paul Maegerman is the ‘chairman’. My thought. Paul knows the tricks of the trade. He became Prince Carnival in Zottegem twice: 1989 and 2006. They don’t sit still, those Zottegem carnival firemen. They are currently restoring an old fire truck with a group of 10 helping hands. See photo 2. Because not all parts can be ordered, they bought an identical fire truck, the ‘donor’, as it were, who has many spare parts.
If they don’t have them, they make them themselves with iron plates and a lot of cutting and hammering. And with angelic patience. In 2021 and 2022, the group had to stay in their ‘barracks’ due to the damn C virus. Couldn’t they invent powder or foam so that those firefighters can put that virus out in a controlled manner? Before period C they already participated in the parades of Zwalm, Brakel, Wetteren, Poperinge, Denderleeuw and many others. The intention is, once the car has been restored, to let it drive along. Hopefully in 2023. Then there will also be a third, typical carnival car for which the clothing is already ready. But cooking costs money. For example, they recently had a pancake sale and there is normally a dinner party on 11/12/2022. Just make a note in your diary. I have done that already.
Thanks for the invite, Dirk en Paul
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