Spain's tourism superpower, I think, is the ability to put on the most thrilling, beautiful festivals in the world. Crisis or no crisis, it's hard to find a village or town that doesn't shut down for a few days to celebrate its patron saint, aided by a seemingly unwise combination of hooved animals, pyrotechnics, local firewater and costumes.
In 2006 and 2007, I ran naked through the streets of Pamplona to draw attention to the suffering of bulls used in this festival. I saw for myself how cruelly people treated the bulls, and although the streets were crowded with members of the media, there was hardly any coverage of the ugly truth behind the sound bites. The 30-second snippets never show the bulls as they are whipped and goaded to get them to race out of their holding pens. Pamplona's narrow cobblestone streets are slippery and slick with spilled beer, and the bulls frequently lose their footing and fall, breaking their horns and bones and sustaining cuts and bruises, and drunken revellers hit them with sticks and rolled-up newspapers.