As I stand here sipping from my litre bottle of sangria, fireworks going off in the star lit sky, a group of beautiful Spanish girls dancing and singing to a marching band, and as the music rolls on, I sit and wonder what tomorrow holds for the three of us. This sounds like the closing scene of a movie and for the most part it feels like it. But the fact is it’s real and amazingly it was an everyday occurrence for a week. What I had imagined and what I expected both paled in comparison to what the Spanish people had to offer for this week long fiesta!
Our experience was always going to be a little different to others, because we needed to film and run on separate occasions over a few days, but also quench our need to party and live the night life just like everyone else. This saw the three of us burning the candle at both ends rising before the sun at around 5 am, working a long day and party an even longer day and night!
Around 9am the nightclubs would close and the bars would open, no matter what time of day it was there were always places to go and drunk people to dance with. Which brings me to my first Spanish dancing lesson! A 50 something year old Spanish lady was passing by, dancing to one of the many a marching band when she grabbed me and started dancing. Not knowing how to say no, I just went along and before I knew it I was in a circle of people dancing and singing Spanish style! The band congregated outside one of the many pubs and the staff generously supplied the band, the dancers and most of the gathered crowd with some of their more favored tapas.
This place is crazy. Every where you go, any time of day, there are people, music, dancing and drinking. It’s hard to resist getting involved as the atmosphere becomes intoxicating and addictive. The energy you gain just being there is indescribable. There are approximately 500,000 thousand visitors to Pamplona during this week and I think I screamed ‘Hola!’ to most of them in the street. It’s the random meeting of people along the way that makes the experience unforgettable.
Each day we’d meet a handful of people from anywhere and everywhere. Kim and Colin are a couple that we met in the main square as they poured Sangria over each other’s head. A crazy Canadian female/Irish male combo that put us to shame in the drinking stakes. On other occasions we spent the morning gallivanting around town with drunken Spaniards who could speak as much English as we could Spanish.
But as loudly as the fiesta started, it came to an end. The bands and dancing all winding down to allow this town to return to normal for another year. The bus now returning to its route where yesterday man and bull ran. Feeling 10 years older, we put ourselves into recovery mode and crawled back into the safe shell of VanDamme to await the next adventure.