Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Santo Aleixo da Restauração village, Alentejo - The Tomina Festivities - "Largada de touros" - The 28th of August 2016

My experience as a first time Tomina Festivities onlooker ended with a "largada de touros", which is a bullfighting related tradition still carried out in many Portuguese and Latin American villages.

It basically means having wild bulls run about freely in the streets of a given village, though confined to delimited areas. Barriers (normally trucks) are positioned at strategic points and therefore determine the running track of the animals.

Young men and courageous onlookers take to the streets sometimes to call out the bulls and become bullfighters for a few moments.

The "largada de touros" in Santo Aleixo da Restauração was confined to a rather limited area of just a few streets and included one bull and two cows.

Problematic as it may seem for animal rights defenders, these people love animals and wouldn't deliberately harm them, I believe ... it's just another tradition and traditions around there are to be preserved

Another family gathering, this time at Misi's set the tone for this experience of mine. Apart from having felt very welcome despite being an outsider I was  also able to immerse myself into century old traditions and get to know a little bit more about my own country. 

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