More bullfights?

Not only was the bull fight on Saturday night in our village, but there was also one on Sunday night.  When it is so close you can walk, you really can't pass that up.  It is a crazy scene to watch.  We thought about doing our anniversary dinner, but the bull fight near by won.  

Instead, we ordered a pizza for pickup.  Pizza Grill is not too far away, and they do deliver, but I went there and picked it up.  It takes a good hour to make the pizza because it is baked on a grill.  We ordered the vegetarian pizza.  Yes, I was surprised to find that these were the vegetables, but it tasted good, so of course it was eaten.  There was corn, peppers, olives and mushrooms.
After that we headed to the bull fights.

Mari asked on my other post about bull fights if I consider this animal cruelty because I am a vegetarian.  Now, I do plan on addressing how I became a vegetarian and which foods I do and do not consume, but I will save that for an entire post somewhere in the next few days.  

To answer this question, the bull is not slaughtered at the end.  In fact, the bull is held in a high regard.  Many guys will demonstrate their manhood by being able to run with the bull.  This is a very old tradition and a major part of their culture.  There are fights from May-October on 4-5 days each week.  So, you can see that this is a major event.  If the bull runs by your house, you are expected to host guests and feed them, not to mention get them drunk.  The talk of the town is where is the fight, how was the fight and did anyone get hurt.  As an American representing America in a foreign country, I am happy to be asked to participate in watching their tradition.

But, is it animal cruelty?  Probably in the mildest sense.  I think it is along the lines of horse racing, which some do consider animal cruelty.  I suppose if the bull slips and falls, then injures his leg, there is a chance he has to be put down, just like a race horse.  I think most years it is the people that are the ones getting hurt, not so much the bull.  I guess it is slightly like bullying (haha) because the locals are taunting the bull, but I can't say that this will determine me (a vegetarian) from avoiding these.  It is a huge part of this island and island life.  I try where I can to be as "local" as possible and not stick out as an American.  I guess that is hard when I drive around in a car that no one else but me has on this island!

So, on to the pictures.  These are all from the second night.  Again, these were on my street, but not in front of my house.  You can see that we were sitting across from a house where there was a window open and people watching from there.  I personally thought this was a dumb idea seeing as bulls can jump pretty high.  We hoped we would be ok up on the 5-6 foot wall were sitting on.

Here are two guys with umbrellas, which they use to capture the bulls attention and then get the bull to perform.
The guy in the red shirt put down the umbrella and used this mat instead.  He would wave this around like a cape.
Ok, this is why you should not have your window open that low to the ground.  It seems the people watching the fight from this house wanted to play with the bull.  Here you have 2 people swinging things at the bull, making him "mad" and then an open window right next to them.  Does this seem smart?
Thankfully the bull staying in the street and did not jump into their house.  

When the bull comes, people in the street quickly jump up where ever they can.  Here you can see some people making their way over the boards.

We were lucky to get a good "show" from the guys I have referred to as semi-pro local matadors.

Well, that does it for my bull fighting pictures for now.  This weekend we got tickets to an arena bull fight.  We were told at this one they do not kill the bull either, so that was what sold me.  We heard that this is a special show with professionals and that they do flips over the bulls.  I am interested to see what will go on.

Again, if you have questions about the bull fights here and the local traditions, let me know in the comments.

QUESTIONS:  What are your plans for this weekend?


Nicole, RD said...

SO interesting! I think you said something that I found important -- when you're an American not in America, you are representing America. A lot of people don't like us, and it's important to honor traditions, even if you don't "get" them. When my husband was in Italy, they had an orange-throwing fight. It was 2 towns that got on horseback and carriages and threw oranges at each other. Standerbys would get PUMMELED at times with oranges and some Americans didn't want to go, but it was a HUGE HUGE HUGE tradition. I found it really interesting! I go to rodeos because I live in Oklahoma - it's southern tradition, in my opinion. I'm not saying it's "right" but it's what they's their culture and tradition.

Sook said...

Oh what a fun post! Want to try that grilled pizza. :)

Simply Life said...

that pizza looks great!

I've seen 1 bull fight in my life and was not prepared for it - I think that will be my only one :)

Unknown said...

family overload - that's my plan :)

Jessie said...

Wow, you were really close to the bulls! And that open window close to the ground - not a good idea, for sure. Whenever I think of bullfighting, I think of guys dressed up in flashy outfits in an arena, but these fights seems less about show and more about the people and the bulls. Where do the bulls come from? And is that bull on a rope? Who's holding the other end??

Anonymous said...

Wow - that's really close! I would be scared to death!

corn on pizza - never thought of it!

I just got home from a wedding shower - my momma is coming over for dinner tomorrow - I know you wouldn't eat them, but we are having ribs!

eatingRD said...

I still can't believe there is bull fighting right in the middle of your street, craziness!! I think it's important to get into the local culture no matter where you live. Makes you feel connected :)

Rachel said...

wow, never seen a bull fight!! thanks for the pics!

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