A San Fermin short-story

The Last Encierro at San Fermin Festivities

The traveler awoke to the sound of rockets and people’s chants. It was July 7th. He dressed in white, with a red scarf and sash, and joined the crowd. He arrived at the Town Hall square. The anthem was sung, and the chupinazo was launched, signaling the start of the festivities.

He drank wine, ate pintxos, and danced with the giants and big-headed figures. But what he desired most was to run in the encierro. He wanted to feel the thrill of facing the bull, risking his life for a few seconds of glory.

The next day, he rose early and headed to the encierro. He heard the explosion of the rocket, announcing the release of the bulls, the uproar of the people, the pounding of hooves. He started to run, glancing back. A dark and horned mass was rapidly approaching. He felt its breath on his neck. He tried to dodge it, but the bull charged at him and tossed him into the air.

He fell to the ground, unconscious and bloody. After the bulls had passed, some rushed to his aid. He thought he would never forget that day, that bull, that celebration. He weakly smiled and closed his eyes, never to awaken again.