Lagos had taken its toll on all of us and after some much-needed down time we ventured to Pamplona Spain for the world-famous and heavily criticized ‘running with the bulls’. We had got some feedback from some local friends to do it through fanatics. Fanatics is a Australian formed company that runs a number of events like Sail Croatia, Running with the bulls and more. As we approached the camp site we were greeted by many Australians and some even from back in our home town, it felt like we were back in Australia for a while there.
Familiar faces as we approached the check in point, many faces you recognize from random hostel meetings and nights out, its funny how similar of an itinerary you have with complete strangers, we even bumped into some of our Lagos pals. It was the few days leading up to the run and we had the opening ceremony ahead of us, man what an experience that was. Thousands of people packed into a small area chanting and throwing sangria on each other, it was a memorable moment that’s for sure.
Shoulder to shoulder, girls getting on shoulders and showing the world what they had to offer, flying bottles the Iceland clap even got a gig and there wasn’t any toilets near by so you know what that meant. The celebrations/event occurs every year for a total of about 2 weeks and is usually criticized amongst many for the mistreatment of animals and also the danger in actually completing the run. We had no interest in the brutal events that took place but the run was an achievement we wanted to tick off the list.
It was the night before the run and the camp site chucked a huge party, probably not the smartest thing to do before facing the risks of getting gored the next day but we still got around it and had an awesome night. All I remember is waking to the sounds of bells and the fanatics staff waking everyone who was going to do the run. I was severely hung over, it was raining and it was about 5.30 in the morning. Getting up was an effort but we made sure we did.
Patiently waiting for the race to start, all in our white gear and the heart was racing that’s for sure. Everyone had their own game plans about when to run and how to go about it the safe way. This was when it finally hit me what was actually about to take place, Trav tried to get out of it but locals pushed him back in, it was really about to happen. Just like that there was a loud siren and we were off. To be honest it was a massive blur I lost the other boys almost straight away and just prayed not to die. 2 minutes a 37 seconds later it was over, I had made the arena safely and was trying to find the others. We all made it but Trav didn’t, he freaked out and stayed in a door way till the bulls passed. I will never forget the sound of those bulls running towards me, I will never be doing it again!
It was another memorable moment we ticked off our list, and another spot we met some legends!
DO: Drink heaps of cheap Sangria
DONT: Die in the run