I have just returned to the UK after an 8 week stint in Vall d’Albaida in Spain; just before I left it happened to be the Puríssima Bull Run, this is one of the oldest and most traditional of the Ontinyent festivals which takes place in the Old Town. Several bulls are given the run of the streets with cotton balls on their horns for decoration and protection, and a bunch of crazy volunteers holding a rope attached the berserk creature. Charging through the town you watch the locals trying to play tag with it, waving their capes in front of it and occasionally being thrown skywards by it. The rest of the town darts in and out of people cages intended for their protection and spectators adorn balconies lining the streets. Music blares, people cheer and the bull runs!
At first I was worried that seeing an animal used like that would be quite distasteful to say the least but having seen it the bull doesn’t seem overly concerned. At times irritated perhaps, but not injured or exhausted. Over all it was immensely fun, and watching some of the people who thought highly of themselves running scared really made the day.