Monday, July 18, 2011

Running of the Bulls (WARNING: non-cycling content)

On July 6th, I took the train to Pamplona for the annual San Fermin festival and the famous Running of the Toros. I didn't really have a plan. I just bought the train ticket and bargained on sleeping 1-2 hrs in a park. At least I got that part right.

However, I also expected sweltering heat. I was wrong. My shorts and a t-shirt didn't really cut it for nighttime temperatures in the low teens (celsius). Purchasing the festival outfit (white pants, white shirt, red neckerchief and red belt) once I got off the train turned out to be a very healthy decision. 

I met 2 Americans and a Canadian on the train. We really do live in a small world. One of the Americans, Ross, told me his wife is from New Zealand. Once we got through the back and forth of "what part of New Zealand?" it turns out his wife's family live next door to my parents in Auckland. And, Ross has met my parents and even watched a Superbowl or two with my father. Yes, small world indeed. 

So, I hung out with Ross, Chase, and Kimon for the night and had a great time (and I didn't have to sleep alone in the park). I didn't run with the toros, but I wish I did, as I think its the only way to experience the festival. Spectating is like watching ice-cream but without eating it.

Here are some scenes from Pamplona from the night of July 6th, as well as the Running at 8am on the 7th.

Left to right: Duncan, Kimon, Ross, and Chase.


  1. No footage of you fighting the bulls? Any maulings this year?

  2. Yes, an Aussie was gored and went to hospital. No fatalities, luckily.