Santa Maria Bullring – La Gloria, TX

Bucking bronco’s, calf roping, and bull riding just speak cowboy.  Bull fighting conjures up images of matadors, Running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain, Hemingway, and my grandfather.  For some reason grandpa really liked Spain.

Grandpa and me (Puerto Rico 1964)

Our friends in Alamo, Texas told us of a bullring in La Gloria, TX.  It has been in operation at some compacity for over seventy years.  February 17, 2020 was the last bull fight before it closed.  It is a bloodless bull fight; the matador’s challenge is to reach over the bull’s head, clutch onto, and pull off a bouquet of flowers.  I learned female bullfighters (matadoras) would prefer to be called, like male bullfighters, matadors. No big surprise there.

The event was sold out.  Kids climbed and hung from the structure, the mariachi band was festive, and we had the most flavorful taco’s while in Texas.  Standing in line at the will call window a lady suggested using the restrooms before it gets too busy, for obvious reasons.

It was a fun experience, I enjoyed it more than Deb.  For me, it was probably the grandpa Spain connection.  The downside of watching the bullfight was the extended goading by the matadors. There were four bulls, and four bouquets captured. The first smaller younger bull actually put on a better showing.  The bull was quick, feisty, and did not tire easily.  The larger older bulls were worn down and taunted to the point where they stumbled, and fell to their knees.

The larger bulls did make an impressive grand entrance.  Slamming into the protective barriers convinced me I had no desire to wave a red rag in front of a bull.  Deb deduced the larger bulls were not enrolled in an exercise program, and did not have much stamina.   We both felt the competition was a little one sided, favoring the humans.  Even still one of the matadors was knocked to the ground, he walked away limping, but he hung in there.  The woman matador displayed more style, and for the most part put on a classier better exhibition.


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