Friday, August 29, 2008


This was one of my favourite places. I really liked it here. It was bloody hot and I was sweating like a pig but it was such a pretty place. We went to some fountain to get our group photo taken and then we headed to the Seville bullring... I loved it! Pete, our tour manager, told us the story behind bullfighting and tried to convince us bullfighting is not as cruel as we think... I'm almost convinced... He said that the bulls who get lead into the ring lead fantastic lives. They spend six months of the year with the boys and six months of the year with the girls.. and can get friendly with whoever they feel like... unlike the bulls who are bred primarily for slaughtering who live in horrendous conditions and don't get the freedom to roam the open fields and smell the fresh air. The bullfighters also live a year longer than the bulls who are slaughtered and Pete said that the slaughtered bulls get a bullet to the back of their brain and the bulls who are lead into the ring get 15 minutes of torture but they have lived a life of bliss... as opposed to the bulls who get slaughtered who have just let a shit life all round and end it with a bullet. I wouldn't say I like the idea of bullfighting but if I had to choose which life I'd rather lead I think I'd choose to be a bullfighter as opposed to a slaughter house bull.

Bulls primed especially for bullfighting are wild bulls. They have never seen people before and when they get into the ring they will charge at anything. There is this man, I think he is called a madagar, and he is responsible for killing the bull. They don't just kill the bull, there are a series of stages they must go through before the bull is killed. I can't remember all the stages but basically the end stage is the final stage where the bull must be killed. Someone of high importance within the crowd, if they are impressed with the way the madagar has killed the bull then he holds up a certain coloured handkerchief and the madagar can cut off the bulls ear. If the person of importance is semi-impressed with the way the madagar has killed the bull then he holds up a different coloured handkerchief and the madagar is allowed to cut off the tail. The madagar is allowed three attempts at killing the bull - and if he doesn't manage it by the third time then he is deemed unworthy to kill the bull and either another person is brought into the ring to kill the bull or he is shot because they don't want the bull to suffer more than it has to. If the bull kills the madagar then that bull is killed and so is its mother because they don't want that bloodline alive anymore. I think this rule is crazy because they breed the bulls to kill them but as soon as a bull kills a madagar they want to destroy its bloodline. The Spanish love this sport and pay quite a lot of money to go and see a bullfight. I think a bullfight would be way too gory for me to watch because bulls DO die in front of you. It all sounds okay written down but seeing it actually happen would freak me out.

In Seville, there is the third largest cathedral in the world. I had to go inside because I've been to 3 out of 4 of the largest cathedrals in the world so I figured I may as well go into this one. In order, here are the 4 largest cathedrals in the world...
1. Saint Peters Basilica in Rome
2. St Pauls in London (although I haven't been inside)
3. Cathedral in Seville
4. Domeo in Florence, Italy.

Inside the cathedral there was Christopher Columbus's tomb... so, I took a photo, had a quick look around the cathedral and headed out to find a tapas bar. I am really over cathedrals. Yes, they are pretty but once you've seen a few of them you do get over them pretty quickly. We had the best tapas and Sangria in Seville. We were going to get Starbucks because it was close, air-conditioned and we were beyond hot and sweaty but there were no seats so we ended up at this delicious tapas bar. Expensive but well worth it. We got some anchovies in oil and vinegar which sounds gross but was actually nice, prawn salad, some beef dish, squid... etc. The choice is endless and different at each tapas bar. Our tour manager told us that the best way to tell a good tapas bar is if there are a lot of napkins on the floor and lots of locals. This was a decent tapas bar though so no napkins on the floor. We also had the best sangria. Definitely worth the money spent.

That night was flamenco dancing which overall was terrible. I spent the night talking to the other people on my table because they were as bored as me and we kept looking at our watches wondering when we'd get to leave.

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