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Corrida de los Toros

GUATEMALA | Tuesday, 2 October 2007 | Views [2498]

I'm twelve feet off the ground, straddling a shaky wood fence, wedged in between some local girls who lured me up to this prime viewing spot to watch the bulls with them.  The bulls, about to be converted into plato típico this evening, stand dumb-foundedly in the center of the bull ring, anxiously shifting head left, then right, as hundreds of local onlookers chuck food, rocks and other objects to taunt the bull.  It's a really sad sight to see.  These big, massive beasts are left out there, with some drunk locals running back and forth in front of them, egging them on.  There's one guy carrying a red flag, looking completely intoxicated, with a t-shirt that reads, "Hooters Girls Dig Me!"  Big slimy drips of saliva hang from the bulls mouth, and mucus shoots from it's nostrils - he's getting angry with everyone making him look like a big fool.  He rushes one guy and imbeds his horns into the guy’s stomach.  Lucky for the guy, the bull's horn tips had been severed off, so his gut is still in tact.  Another guy takes a beating and is bleeding from the forehead.  The bull rushes to the entrance trying to escape the scene and is kicked in the head with heels of boots on the cowboys sitting near the bull ring entrance gate.  The bull rushes close to where I'm sitting with my newly found amigas.  We all scream and cling to each other, so as not to fall off, into the pit.  Outside the ring, a bull fight of another sort is brewing.  A large Guatemalan woman is beating up a tiny, drunken man - not sure if he's a novio, esposo or just some guy in the wrong place at the wrong time, but she shows no mercy, and it takes several of his friends to rescue him - not a good thing for his ego in this highly machismo society.  Machismo is at it's height here, inside the ring I count 12 guys all pumped up on attitude and liquid courage, ready to take on the bull, until it runs at them, and then they do a "home base slider" beneath the fence and hundreds of shouting fans.  The bull is finally swapped out and others take their turn in the ring.  None of them are harmed, just bruised egos, although tonight is the night hey become packaged for consumption.  Not the way I'd like to spend my last "living" night on earth.

Tags: Adrenaline


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