the running of the bulls, day 1, 2008

10 07 2008

The five most terrifying things about participating in the most well known spectacle of the San Fermins:

5.) You know that no matter how fast you are, they are faster.

4.) You are basically sprinting forward while looking backward in the midst of a giant flailing crowd.

3.) . . . in the midst of a giant DRUNK flailing crowd.

2.) They come in waves. The novice (me), assumes that after the first wave passes, he’s in the clear…then there erupts another cheer and all the people behind you start scattering from some unseen rumbling. Then that wave passes. And for the whole rest of the time, you’re wondering if there are more bulls coming (there are!) and how close they are (close!).

1.) What you don’t see in the video: after the bulls go into the arena and they start shutting the doors, the local police jump out in front of the door, billy clubs drawn and just start wailing on anyone still moving forward. If you are unlucky enough to be close to the doors, you will be forced to keep moving into this thrashing by the drunk, sprinting, crowd that is surging behind you.

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