Thursday, August 6, 2009

Tragic run

Ermitaño takes umbrage but the runner survived
Chaos as Ermitaño ploughs into runners
SO MUCH has happened since I last blogged. Too much to put in one entry, your eyes would just cross. My middle name should have been Keepmeaningto.

Tragically, the day after I wrote my last entry on San Fermin, a young man from Madrid was killed. Twenty-seven-year-old Daniel Jimeno was an experienced runner and aficionado de toros, but was in the wrong place at the wrong time. One of the Jandilla bulls, by the name of Capuchino, gored Daniel in the neck, severing an artery. The medical team moved swiftly and got him to the operating theatre in record time, but the surgeons couldn’t save him.

Ten more runners were injured, most of them by the same bull. One was a 60-year-old American who had a serious head injury. Americans, and foreigners in general, are notorious for getting hurt in San Fermin. Either from lack of experience or sheer foolhardiness. This was one of the worst encierros I have seen.

Two days later (it’s an 8-day affair) a Miura bull named Hermitaño took umbrage with another experienced runner, just outside the bullring, and attacked him continuously, despite other men’s efforts to distract the beast. From the TV footage you’d never think the runner’d survive – but he did, despite being gored twice and thrown around like a sack of potatoes. It is always a question of luck – good or bad – on where they get gored that determines whether they survive.

Moving on –