In the origins of almost all things, at least in Galicia, you can always find some old legend, as if even the most everyday needed some exceptional coating to be counted. In the case of the Festa da Dorna, the most famous in Ribeira, its people go back to the middle of the last century to rescue the pique between an apothecary and an octopus fisherman on account of a raffle.
Don Emilio, the apothecary, announces that he has been the winner of the dorna – a small boat similar to drakkar vikingo- that is drawn for the benefit of the Virgen del Carmen and, for this purpose, organizes a great party. The fisherman, however, maintains that the lucky one in the draw has been him and decides to respond to the provocation with a great uproar that ruins the celebration. This is the origin of the two most popular expressions of this pilgrimage of tourist interest, the allada and the colloada, which could well serve to explain the story of the last and most radiant legend of the beautiful village of Barbanza: the athlete Ana Peleteiro.
He was five, the today European champion, when he was encouraged to play sports for the first time. He liked rhythmic gymnastics, but his interest ran into the reluctance of a father afraid of his daughter's physical development: "You're going to be small", Told him. His initiatory contact with athletics would come a few days later, in the new sports complex that was being built in the town, with four laps to a track that was not yet such. "Four laps on the outside, of course; they were still doing it. And I like", recalls Ana in an interview with the LaLiga channel.
He was also attracted to the idea of becoming a teacher, of teaching small children, but that illusion was left unattended as athletics was sowing new dreams in his head. That would be the sweet part of the story, the allada. The other, the colloada, it has to do with the extreme sacrifice required by a sport that, at least from a distance, always seems to take away more than it returns.
"I'm in a place where I do not have anything that I like, only athletics", confesses in the same interview. There is no sea in Guadalajara, where he trains with the group captained by Iván Pedroso, the Cuban legend of the long jump. Neither is close to the family, nor to friends, nor to neighbors who speak with their own voice, with that singsong accent, full of eses and ges, that we all recognize in Ana even when she expresses herself in Spanish. The color of their skin refers to their African roots, to the slaves who populated the world without intending to, but their way of speaking leaves no doubt about their authentic origins.
Galician and Celtic, to be more precise, an emergent legend of a people left behind by the god for decades that begins to show its head with a dose of pride hardly imaginable just a few years ago. His example will serve as an incentive for all those girls who already dare to dream of new roles in a changing but slow society, insecure in the face of the arrival of the feminist cyclone. And that is precisely Ana Peleteiro: a new wind, a giant wave.