Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sunday - La Maestranza

Photos linked from

The golden evening light spilling over the top of the ring and scattering across the golden dirt of the ring.  The taunts, the crowd, the trumpets, the bells on the horses.  Then it is all over, and the tightness pent up in the ring bursts slow motion out of the opened doors.  The cars, life going on down the wide boulevard stir the air as you move out, drawn to gaze toward the river and down the tree-lined street.  You drink in the open air, turn left, then are sucked back down the narrow streets, toward the heart of the city.  You walk toward the promise of the night and the hope of the heartfelt flamenco of true gitans.  At the end of the lane, before you disappear from the sight of the open boulevard and the river and the cleanness that comes with it, you stop.  Cinco Jotas is in front of you, warm and inviting, but after seeing the machismo of the corrida, you turn to the right and enter the clean, spartan bar with the open doors and the zinc counter tops and order a caña .  The Cruzcampo so cold that it leaves a metallic hint of the tap.  The men in the bar nod, maybe one smiles, and they do what has been done for years beyond memory.  You look at the pictures covering the wall of the drama that has passed across the street.  Maybe one more as the cloak of night begins to fall.  You nod your goodnight to the bartender, step out, and stop on the busy corner.  You look left once more, past the ring, across the open boulevard, and to the river where the last red light of sunset is chased away by the arc lights.  Then you swiftly pivot right, moving with purpose down the narrow alleys into the night ahead.

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