“25.34.76 BlueChain 1542”
It has been repeating over and over again in my head yet I do not have the slightest clue what does it mean. As much as I could recall, no memory has been coming into the sight of my mind. Not sure since when though. I have been looking right, left, front and back throughout my brain. Nothing.
I led my legs to no destination in particular while grasping every inch of my energy. I feel a little lethargic, god knows why. Physically I feel like my soul is wearing away and It scares me a little knowing that life ends with no memory at all, how useless the journey of a man must be.
A large Lionel Messi poster is hanging on the building wall. Right next to the building is a small yellow-green field and some of the local kids were playing soccer. I have my eyes upon the number 9 jersey kid. His goalkeeper stumbles after making a save. All of his other teammates are appearing fast to defend the goal post, he peeked at Lionel Messi while rushing urgently to give a hand with the defense.
I look to the other away and saw the street’s name; Pamplona. From afar, a bustling bus appear out of the corner and it comes to a stop. Before I turned away, the bus rotated at its position, revealing its name BizkaiBus.
“Fascinating” Some of the tourists nearby commented as the bus numbly stopped at the rotation and it is now positioned 180 degrees from where it was without making a U-Turn. In this congested area, it sure comes handy. Now maybe with this memory in sight I can die happy.
But I feel no admiration at all because it seems all too familiar to me.
Some of the passengers disembarked from the bus. Most of them are wearing white attire with a red piece of cloth wrapped around their head. One in particular, dumps carelessly the bus ticket into the trash bin, utterly missed and it landed on the street. I picked it up and the date shows; 07/07/2013.
“Mummy! Mummy! Why are there many people today at the street?”
“It’s the El Encierro! Darling. Since we are on vacation in Spain, we will be witnessing these cattle of the Toro Bravo breed get to their bullring before they are put into permanent rest in the evening. The catch of the event will be the act of bravado by these youngsters to command these cattle while trying to ride on them” A passionate lady explaining to her child.
A group of people are walking along the narrow road most likely towards the main event venue I assumed. I witnessed a wave of white and red clothing men and woman, must be resembling the colors of El Encierro celebration.
In between the crowd, I see a group of cheerful ladies. Their laughter channels to my attention. And I can hear every tiny bits of their bliss as though they are only a distant away. Its somehow refreshing.
El Encierro. Interesting.
“25.34.76 BlueChain 1542”
It keeps coming into my conscience again. My frustration builds as I continue searching every corner of me to interpret the meaning of the puzzling set of word and numbers.
“Vamos vamos a ir amigos” I am perplexed as I become carried away and without a choice, joining forcefully the parade. One tourist is very excited with the atmosphere and shouted from behind me “Come on, lets go, friends!”
The jolly laughter of the ladies accompanies me along the way as they were not so far ahead. Although I am trapped in a whirl of confusion, the laughter brings a little comforting distraction.
A brochure slipped from a tourist’s pocket who is standing away from the street. I picked it up. The El Encierro consists of 4 rocket blasts.
The first signals the opening of corral gate.
The second signals the release of 6 bulls.
The third & fourth signal the entire herd has entered the bullring and its corral respectively.
The average duration between the first and the fourth rocket is only 4 minutes. Eavesdropping, picking pieces conversations from the tourist mostly. I couldnt really understand Spanish anyway. My senses are working the extra mile to pick up information.
“Very well. As all it takes is only 4 minutes to end, I might as well enjoy it.” I thought
A giant clock on the wall is showing 8.00 a.m. The first rocket booms.
“I’ll just wait till the bulls are around the corner” I thought
The second rocket booms.
The minute I hear the screaming and cheering, I am too late to realize that I am right beside cattle’s main route. At the corner, some youngsters are attempting to jump on one of the cattle. To such extent one would want to prove by being a bravado eh? Unfortunately to me, I got pushed instead on the main route. One of the cattle managed to pass through me leaving me unharmed. My legs continued flexibly to run, my eyes saw the direction where people are running, so I followed intuitively. Apparently, there were more panicking people running a little faster, a little more faster, zooming past me one by one. Now I am a little behind. The lethargic is bringing my body down in stamina and capacity. I know I couldn’t carry on any longer.
Then I heard a rough, heavy breathing right next to me. I saw the horn first and as its thumping from gets louder, the whole cattle’s body comes into my sight. This memory is stamping into my head clearly but no, I dont think i’d die happy. It catched up with me in no time and finally the sight changes with the cattle running ahead of me while thrusting its head everywhere. The cheering from the crowd seems to make it more excited. One of them shouted to me
“Montar en el ganado! Se valiente!” whatever that means
The cheering is getting ecstatic as the cattle passed by me, one by one. I saw the crowd have changed their focus on the remaining cattle at the back. I peeked and to my horror the last 2 bulls are charging towards me.
“This period of 4 minutes sure seemed long” I thought
Before I can do anything, one of the bulls charged and collided with me. I felt n the ground hard and landed at the side of the road.
“One has passed. Please just make another one pass by the same way.” I thought
As when I am getting up, my whole body is being swept across the route in mid air by a thrust of a horn. I confirmed its the horns because the pain is like being stabbed by two pointed sharp tools. Gathered my strength to stand up then I found myself in mid air again juggling in between two horns. Each bounce on the cattle’s head caused enough pain to lose away my body’s lethargic. The cattle is in the state of restlessness. I struggled to see the route ahead of because my nomadic position is not allowing it. While the cattle is thrusting its head everywhere, the sky seems near and far in the distant.
“When this ends and if I die, will God just take my soul straight from the sky or will i need to endure some more pain first?” I thought
In a moment, I feel as though the air captured me from the cattle and my sight shifts slowly from the sky to the crowd. Finally, the cattle’s horns emerged in my eyes with full pride. I grasped my consciousness as much as I can while helplessly the horns zoomed into my eyes. The bull thrust its feet and thumps gloriously to the air, to get rid of me. Eventually, the horns gored through me.
The third rocket booms.
I lay motionless on the street as the medic team rushes towards me. They are trying to engage some communication with me but what is more soundly is the voice…
“25.34.76 BlueChain 1542”
It was a command. Unknown always. I just get the job done and my pay will be ready discreetly.
7/7/’13. That is the today’s date.
- That is the house number and I was looking for the house before I become totally out of memory. Still clueless how.
Bluechain. It’s the access code.
Glimpses of people’s faces are running through my head. Deep in fear most of them while a pair of hands, some are with gloves while some are not of which the finale these face were all tainted with fresh red blood. The instruments that I have used to force the life out of those people; I remember each and every one of them. At this junction, this time the victim is me myself, taken away by a pair of horns.
“Perhaps, the greatest curse could be that one knows everything at the end.” I thought
The medic team tried their level best to restore me who is gradually falling apart; inside out. My body is being rushed into the ambulance. But I know the better and I chuckled as my last breath draw nearer, I thought perhaps its a good death to be killed by as an animal by another animal.
The fourth rocket booms.