Take a man, a frog and a wheelbarrow and imagine a race… yes, you chose the right option: the man pushes the wheelbarrow with the frog on it.. it sounds funny enough, no need to imagine other possibilities!
Of course the frog will not specially like the idea of standing still on the bumping vehicle and will jump off, the man drops the wheelbarrow and catches the frog and off he starts pushing and running again.
Take the 7 contrade of Fermignano: Cà L’Agostina, Calpino, La Pieve, La Torre, San Lazzaro, San Silvestro and Santa Barbara, each one wearing different colours, all running for the Palio, take drums, beautiful Renaissance dresses, falconers, lots of people and fried frog-legs, this is what you can see if you visit the Palio della Rana in Fermignano during the weekend following Easter Sunday (this year they had to move the celebration due to the bad weather).
By the way, the Palio della Rana is a very serious issue and there’s a veterinary who checks that the frogs are sound and fit before and after the race, and apparently the Guardia di Finanza (financial police) is also somehow involved in the inspection!
Palio delle Rane is also the highlight of the village festival in a village near ours, Paganico. It’s held on the first weekend of September on the Sunday, during the Sagra della Granocchia. I told you Le Marche and Tuscany are just the same!!! LOL
I wish Le Marche was just a tenth as well known as Tuscany is…