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July 13, 2011


Yesterday we picked up our Europcar and started our drive from Marbella to Ronda. Ronda used to be an old stomping ground of Ernest Hemingway and Orson Wells. It's also the home of the oldest bullring in Spain, the Real Maestranza. It still functions as a bullring, but only showcases one tournament in September.

Hemingway became somewhat obsessed with bullfights and bullfighters in his time and such is the theme of one of my favourite books, The Sun Also Rises. I'm re-reading it during this trip.

I'm not so sure how I feel about the bullfights - I can appreciate it's a cultural tradition and part of Spain's history. According to the bullfight museum, this tradition and sport dates back hundreds of years ago. That being said, I also think it's an inhumane and cruel sport that faces a matador (the hero) with an angered bull, who will eventually meet its fate.

We're planning on going to a bullfight in Madrid, but I may not last the entire "show". We'll see. As always, I'm curious, but still don't understand how thousands can gather every week to see such a spectacle.

Today - to Jerez de la Frontera - and the land of Sherry.

~ J


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