Tourists revel at Spain tomato-squishing fiesta

 28 Aug 2014 - 0:00

Revelllers poor tomato pulp onto a man during the annual “tomatina” festivities in the village of Bunol, near Valencia in Spain, yesterday.

BUNOL, Spain: Revellers pelted each other with tomatoes and bathed in red goo yesterday in Spain’s Tomatina, a fiesta that draws thousands each year for “the world’s biggest food fight”.
Locals and visitors from as far away as Australia, Japan and the United States crammed into the eastern town of Bunol as mushy tomatoes flew in every direction in a world-famous orgy of mush.
“It was mental. Crazy. People jumping around, throwing tomatoes and slipping over,” said Alex Harris, 20, from Dorset in England, his T-shirt torn and chest drenched in juice.
“It was awesome. Hectic, chaotic, not for the claustrophobic,” said Ben Brown, a London-based Australian with a head plastered with red pulp. “It’s the most fun you’ll have in an hour in your life.”
One of Spain’s quirkiest and best-known tourist draws, the Tomatina was stained this year by a row over its privatisation.
Mindful of safety and money, the indebted local authorities last year began charging revellers an entry fee and hired a private company, Spaintastic, to sell tickets.

Nasa developing robot troops to explore alien worlds
Washington: The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) is developing a new troop of robots that could one day race across distant planets as a sort of space exploration vanguard. Dubbed as “swarmies”, the remote controlled toy truck-like robots are much smaller than other robots such as Mars rover Curiosity.
Equipped with a webcam, wi-fi antenna and GPS system for navigation, the swarmies work like an ant colony, media reports said.
Like an ant, once one of the robots finds something interesting, it can use radio communication to call its robotic brethren over to help collect samples. A software developed by the engineers from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida directs the swarmies to fan out in different directions and search for a specific, predetermined material, like water on Mars.