The Fira de Santa Llúcia is a Catalan Christmas market located at the Barcelona Cathedral square. Most stalls sell items which are uniquely Catalan.
According to historians, the market dates back to the 18th century when people started selling things related to the Nativity scene after celebrating mass in honor of Santa Llucia. Santa Llucia’s feast day falls on December 13.
The Nativity scene is an essential Christmas decoration in Catalonia, as in the rest of Spain. In this fair, the figurines used in the Nativity scene come in different shapes and sizes. Some are whimsical, others are cute, while most have traditional rendering.
What makes a Catalan Nativity scene different from the rest is the inclusion of an “odd” character, the caganer (or the defecator).
Yup! You heard it right. A pooping person is usually included in their Nativity scene. It’s believed to bring happiness and luck. Usually, this pooping figurine is dressed in traditional Catalan peasant costume with a red beret called baretina. Nowadays, you can see politicians, athletes and even your favorite fictional characters as caganers.
Another Catalan Christmas symbol that can be found in this market is the Caga tió. It is a wooden log with a smiling face and a baretina. The Caga tió is cared for every night leading to Christmas eve. It is fed and it is covered with a blanket to stay warm during winter nights. On Christmas eve however, it is beaten with a stick so that it will poop candies and nuts.
I really don’t know what’s the deal with Catalans and pooping things.
And lastly, there are a lot figurines of witches and owls in the fair. While it may not be solely Catalan, they are said to bring good luck also.
The fair just ended yesterday, December 23. They usually open at the end of November. It may be too late to get a pooping thing but you have next year anyway.