July 10, 2015

Pamplona, Spain

The Plaza Consistorial before the encierro on July 10th.
The Plaza Consistorial before the encierro on July 10th.

I woke up today at 06:25, dressed, and got ready to run with the bulls again. I met up with Michelangelo at the ground floor of the hotel shortly after 06:50 and we both walked to the Plaza Consistorial and entered on to the encierro course in front of the town hall. We waited there until after 07:45. When we walked to a spot on the right-hand side of Estafeta Street. At 08:00, the rockets went off and we both kept a lookout, waiting until the bulls reached “Dead Man’s Corner” before we started. Once the bulls turned the corner, we began to run. This time, there wasn’t a pileup in front and I was able to trot along at a nice pace. Also, the bulls were separated by short distances in three groups, this made the passing take longer and I also ended up closer to the beasts than I had been yesterday – in other words, this morning’s run was much more exciting. The bulls passed us without incident and Michelangelo and I continued on in to the Plaza de Toros. We stayed in the bullring while the first vaca was released and afterwards jumped over the side to exit the stadium. We tried going both possible ways toward the exit but were denied by idiot officials on both ends of the ring (each telling us to walk the other way around the circle), so we then decided to climb in to stands; Michelangelo made it through and I was waiting behind several other runners until idiot police officers (is there any other kind?) denied us that exit. I then climbed back in to the bullring, walked straight for the exit, climbed over the side wall, and exited the ring and stadium (in hindsight, I should’ve done this to begin with). I met up with Michelangelo outside the stadium and we both walked to Bar Txoko for an after-run drink. We both ended up having a cocktail comprised of chocolate milk, liquor, and ice (a bit strange, but tasty). While we were drinking our choco-moloko pluses and trying to watch the encierro being replayed on the television screen of an adjacent bar, two (possibly 18?) girls came by and gave us both shots from the cap of their liqueur bottle before wandering off to share their drink with some other partyers. We then both finished our adult chocolate milk, sat down, and each ordered another choko-moloko plus as well as breakfast (I had local sausages and a bite of Michelangelo’s omelette sandwich). After eating, we walked back to the hotel and went to our separate rooms. I had hoped to have the energy to type out journal entries all day, but I was feeling far too exhausted, so I took a nap and slept most of the afternoon. Eventually I woke up after 16:00, showered, dressed, bullshitted, walked to the Carrefour Express to get some more snacks and drinks after 18:00, returned to my room, and bullshitted some more. After 20:00, I joined Michelangelo for dinner and we both walked to the Café Iruña at the Plaza del Castillo. Once there, we ordered our food and I had beer, a piquillo pepper croquette, and veal scaloppini with piquillo peppers and French fries. After dinner, we walked through the crowds (there were a lot of Spaniards out tonight, more than yesterday – no doubt due to it being Friday night) and stopped at a shop window, where we bought a plastic jug of sangria, which we then proceeded to drink using two plastic cups. We then walked back to the hotel, finished our cups of sangria, and went back to our separate rooms. Unfortunately I bullshitted some more before getting to work (my mind seems to be rebelling quite a bit at this point). Eventually I typed out some journal entries, but I was still very far behind. Finally, I retired to bed after 03:00.


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An open journal or an exercise in narcissism.