Born in Caruaru, junior Jeep selection analyst Rafaella Albuquerque, 35, does not remember exactly when she started coming to the São João festival. "I was very young, I must have been about three years old when my mother put on my checkered dress and made tiny dots on my face as if they were freckles, a typical characterization at this fiesta", she recalls. It could not be otherwise; the Saint John's festival is her favorite festival. "It is a moment that unites with a warmth that is not found anywhere else, a warm atmosphere to celebrate with the family", she describes, stressing that until today, her family has gathered around the traditional bonfire to celebrate the date.
Among the peculiarities of São João, Rafaella remembers an unusual tradition. "We have the custom of making the typical foods on a giant scale, such as the largest couscous, the biggest canjica (a typical sweet dish associated with winter festivals), the biggest pamonha (similar to corn tamale) and the biggest peanut brittle in the world. And it all starts on the streets. These are ideas that only the Northeastern can pull from a hat.
The passion for the June festival comes along with the pride of the Northeastern culture. All this appreciation, both for her and her family is passed on to the younger ones. "I have no children yet, but my passion will certainly be passed on to them. And we make sure my nephews know about it. It's important not to lose this culture and for the bonfire to remain lit within each one of us".