Medellín 2008: Corralejas

Corraleja en Colombia
Picture by Luis Pérez

A corraleja is a typical celebration from the Colombian coast regions where people gather in a place similar to a bullfight ring and fight several bulls. The difference with a bullfight is that there is no matador in corralejas, but anyone can jump in and fight the bull. And the bull is never killed. It is very dangerous and lots of people get injured. But you can stay off the ring and just watch the whole thing while you listen to a live band and drink alcohol.

Yesterday I went to a Corraleja with my friends from college and it was very fun to watch but also disturbing to see all these drunk guys fighting the bull and doing it for money or alcohol. They would ask the crowd for money after doing different dangerous tricks like jumping on top of the bull, and they will also show you their wounds and ask you for money to pay the hospital.

After the corraleja was over we went outside the ring and listened to a vallenato concert by Silvio Brito and stayed there until 11pm dancing and drinking more aguardiente. Finally a friend took me home and my sister was having a good bye party since she will be moving to Virginia next week to pursue a PhD.