It was controversial and becoming more so over time. Some hated it and others had fought for it for years but September 25th, 2011 marked the end of more than 600 years of bullfighting in Barcelona. The killing of bulls was finally banned in Catalonia prompting some fans to pay eight times the price to see the last bullfight at Arenas de Barcelona.
You could liken it to the latest release of the iPhone. Some aficionados reportedly quequed up starting from the Thursday before the Sunday performance. Fans scooped up sand from the floor of the bullring as cherished keepsakes. Over the years thousands of bulls have died in the sands of La Monumentala, another Barcelona bullring where a mere eight bullfighters died after being gored.
This trend away from the brutal killing of the bulls started long ago and I can remember that the 1st bullfight we ever attended in Lisbon, Portugal at least twenty years ago, both repulsed and captivated us. The pagentry, color, music and the incomparable horsemanship of the “national fiesta” was none other than amazing. And even though the bull was no longer killed in front of the crowd in Portugal at that time, it could only be described as brutalizing for the big beautful beast of a bull raised from its first day for that spectacle.
For a great read on bullfighting, check out Hemingway’s Death in the Afternoon, the nonfiction book about the ceremony and traditions of Spanish bullfighting. In the meantime if you’d prefer shoppng to reading you can do that too because the biggest bullring in Spain, Arenas Barcelona has been converted to a mall and we had lunch there yesterday at one of the many rooftop restaurants.
Aloha, Mikie ~just a blogger (fightin’ like a girl)
~Psst, tired of politics? Check out Travel in the Categories drop down menu (right side panel) for my travel blogs posted from around the world.