24 Apr 2016 Running With The Bulls – Granda, Nicaragua
Cowboys, Bulls, and Booze
Sounds like a great combination right? Well least an interesting one.
We learned that the bulls (or maybe it was the cowboys, and the booze) are even less timely then most things in Central America. The festival was slated to start at 2:00pm, however they didn’t get to the Central Park until about 4:00pm.
As the bulls make their way through the Central Park area they are tied together and lead by one crazy bastard on a horse. To make this poor guys job more difficult the authorities try and corral the bulls in the park briefly. They parked fire trucks across the streets, for reasons unknown. Maybe they were trying to spark some excitement, or to give the local young men a chance to test their bravado, either way it made for near suicide for the single horsemen responsible for leading the bulls through the 4 foot gap to continue down street.
Once the bulls are past the square it’s time to drink! Drinking and driving a horse is apparently relatively common practice for some according to a local that we watched the festival with. The horses are generally responsible for getting them home and most horses know the way home.
We watched the activities from the safety of a restaurant balcony, if that’s the way you prefer to do things too then I suggest you make your reservation a few days before and get a decent seat. That is if you aren’t up for the chance of a bull coming after you… One bull did get off the path and tore through Central Park, which was filled with families, kids, and old ladies. We made reservations the day of, and paid for a seat, but it wasn’t the best view. This is not a super organized event and safety is completely on you. The only casualty this year was a horse that a bull charged, but it’s not uncommon for human injuries and I am sure somewhere along the way someone has died.
One of my favorite photos from the day didn’t come from the bulls at all, but a cute little Nicaraguan boy with his father, on an equally cute little boy sized horse. At just 6 years old he was in the square managing his mini horse, with a little help from dad.