The bullring is bigger than you thought. The 400-pound vaquilla even bigger. The ranch hands all have guns, but Jorge, your new friend, is strumming his classical guitar, soft plucks, his legs dangling over the edge of the plaza de tientas. Your arms are throbbing, tired from holding up the capes all weekend in practice. Now the young heifer is looking at you. She wants to charge. Here she comes.   

More information: The California Academy of Tauromaquia offers weekend bullfighting classes. [$500 for training in San Diego; bullfightschool.com].