Friday, December 31, 2010

Closing cycles...

Today, and before this year ends and the next begins... the end of a year I shall remember for all my life...

I am linking to Paulo Coelho's blog he has just published...

Closing cycles...

Thank you my friends, as I have said before, for travelling the road with me... My road has been bumpy and hard underfoot this year, with many a twist and turn... thank for all the kind words and prayers for Mom and I...

I wish you all a Happy New Year... Rich in health, family, love and life....

until next year 2011...

Friday, December 24, 2010

And now, this morning Franco and I went to friends for a late lunch, we went to Miramar first down at Las Lagunas, how busy? very busy! Everyone was shopping like it was Christmas Eve!!! Oh yes it is isn't it! And yesterday down at La Canada it was the same, difficult to walk a straight line, due to many people going in all directions! And we only went in to get some curtain pole supports... you know, the thing you want most just at Christmas time!!! We also bought a curtain pole of course, which was great fun to carry out of there, the Christmas decs are only about six foot high in some places and our 3metre pole was way higher than them!!! I could see Franco pulling them all down! We managed to negotiate the mall ok though, and fitted the pole in the car, and today, well tonight now I think Franco may put the pole up and we can hang the curtains!!! Well maybe....

Its just a short Blog today, Christmas Eve, below is something that came by way of fb, and I want to share with you all....

God saw you getting tired and a cure was not to be. So he put his arms around you and whispered come with me. With tearful eyes we watched and we saw you pass away. Although we love you dearly, we could not make you stay. A golden heart stopped beating, hard working hands at rest. God broke our hearts to prove to us, he, only takes the BEST. Put this on your status if there is someone in heaven you will miss this xmas...

Merry Christmas everyone... thank you for hanging in there with me this year, its not been easy, but knowing I have friends *out there* who listen, without judgement, [well I can't hear you can I!!!], has been a great help.... I hope all your Christmas wishes and dreams come true... Make them happen.... take care....


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Going to put a rush on this Blog today, see who can win, the electric company or me! We have rain, again, been some everyday for last few days... Cant even remember when it started... That's a sign of the mood I am in!

But before I forget, you must zoom into above photo and check out the *cheeky* chap who is lingering near the castle, and to the right! Actually, know I have told you exactly where is he you won't be able to miss him!

This is the Alhaurín el Grande Nativity, of course, a wonderful piece of workmanship, a bit different this years from the past years.... Which is good, when I took a friend who had never seen it[gasp!] [shock!] [horror!] So was good for me to see something different myself, but just as excellent!

I think maybe a shot video would have been good, maybe tomorrow, if we can get the kayak out and paddle up stream to get to it!

This morning our electric did go out with one heluva bang, but couldn't find anything that had set it off, or rather taken it over its limit, so just put it back on, and it stayed on, gave Franco a shock, not literally, but it happened when he was up stairs and it was the up stairs network that went bang before throwing the whole lot off!

When did I last Blog? Heck a whole week ago! I'm sorry, I am not doing good, all I can think about is my Mom and how she was this time last year, and her Christmas card in absence is.... is... well just tearing at me...

And all the moves I seem to find on TV are sad, its just the simple part of a movie that did it for me yesterday, the movie itself, Noel, was fine, although the bit where Robin Williams said "tell you Mom its ok to let go now" got me going, but right at the end the daughters sat on her Mom's bed in hospital, the Mom took hold of her daughters hand and just held on.... And maybe I should be letting the movie go too because remembering it now, isn't doing me any good either.

This morning Pippa and I got out of the house, turned right, turned right again, then the heavens opened and we turned back around and got back home pronto! We were both soaked through in just a matter of minutes!

We went to Ikea the other day, got some nice smelly Christmassy candles, we haven't replaced the tree lights, so that look cheery, not!

What have we been doing all this week then? Yesterday, work, was very very quiet, but started well... The poor lady opening the rejas first thing, couldn't raise it up and a guy from Mercadona helped, only he didn't really, she hadn't taken out the keys! So up it went with the keys in situ and no way to open the store or reach the keys, this is when us other two arrived and we used a ladder from over the road, I volunteered to go up the ladder, on a slope, in the wet!!!??? And once up there realised the only way to release the keys was to pull the rejas back down, so I suggested we used the top of the ladder to pull it down, this was hilarious in itself! But we got the keys out and opened up the store!

Then a customer came and and told us a store down the road was chucking some things out! And she had told them about us, so I went down to let them know we would be collecting it tomorrow when there were more staff and to thank them.... Only they gave me a bag and said there was one more to come, I carried that back up, went back down and found the last bag was a huge black bin bag full of their unwanted stock! I couldn't carry it and got one of the guys there to carry it for me... Which caused a bit of an argument, they, being Chinese and not speaking a lot of Spanish, and me not speaking much Chinese! It did cause a few problems!!! And once over the Mercadona roundabout I told him thank you, and I'll take it from here, and he just gave me the huge heavy bag to carry... So that was fun!

One of girl got soaked through running an errand for the shop also, so we sent her back out for coffee's... well once your wet, how much more wet can you get??

We had coffee and mince pies and gently steamed....

Monday Franco and I went down to Fuengirola, popped in to see some friends, oh and went to La Trocho, twice, on Sunday we went to the market there and up stairs, as it was open, I saw a lovely coat which Franco said he would get me for Christmas, they didn't have my size and the man said he would bring in a couple of different sizes on the following morning, so we went there, at 10am... his stall wasn't open, nor did it the hour or so we waited about.... and on our return he was open, but didn't have the coats, said they didn't have any other sizes, but took my number in case... oh well C'est la vie...

And as mentioned we went to Ikea on Saturday, busy busy busy there... and later to Miramar in Las Lagunas, also very busy.... I think we went to El Corté Ingles on Monday? or Saturday, oh also we went into Coín on Monday... had some bills to pay for friends, five in all, couldn't pay them in Alhaurín, only town in the whole of Andalucia that you cannot pays the bills from Coín in!!!! When it list the banks, the BBVA which has the bar code reader payment machine in its doorways... even that wouldn't except it!!!

So off we went, four of the bills were just over 20€, but you couldn't put any more than 35€ in notes into the machine... the other bill had a limit of 50€, so we went to the cash desk first, thinking 50's would be ok, but then found otherwise, luckily a bank guy was doing something there already and took the money and changed it into notes we could use!!! We were causing a line up behind us, tough! One woman said, how long are you going to be? Franco turned round and said not long and she said, "I am double parked out there!" Franco said, well there's a car park just under here which is cheap and less chance of getting a ticket!!! Who double parks there car in Spain to go into a bank? Well ok, maybe lots do, but she was English, and we all know it can take half hour just to do one little thing in a bank, you can never expect to walk in go to the desk, and go out again!

The desk in this bank by the way, didn't have any customers at the desk, but there are many many signs saying bill payment at machine only, and it means it, even though we had all the money to pay the bills when we got change the woman wouldn't have offered to take them and the payment there!

Was good to have a coffee afterwards... and a pastry, [for me], and so much change, five bills and tonnes of change from the machine!!!!

Oh yes, also Monday, I had an 8:30 appointment at the doctors, almost forgot, although I still have the bruise to show for it! I have never had a bruise like this from a blood test, and so painful, she tied a piece of rubber round my arm so tight it was agony it was a wonder she got any blood out at all!

Then I had an EKG[ECG] That won't show up anything at all, I was laid out there in the freezing cold with what looked like a set of jump leads on my ankles, wrists and chest, for one minute, and not an irregular heart beat or palpitation moment, in that minute!

Well its still raining... outside and in my heart...

I feel for all my friends who have lost their Mom's this year... five, five other girls all without their Mom's this Christmas, just in my little circle, and thousands of others I know...

So before I bring you all down with me I think a mug of lovely hot chocolate will give me some good happy chemicals, for ten minutes!


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

What a wonderful song, Coldplays, Christmas Lights, just as it came on the radio our Christmas tree lights went off! Bizarre... They don't look like they're coming back on, and can't see any bulbs that are blackened, so must just be broken, only a year old! I had lights last year from ten years ago.... Just don't make them like they used to eh!!

A Chocolate cake is in the oven, well sort of, its my normal crumb cake but with some cocoa powder in, and a couple of bananas which were on their way out, or off! so I chucked them in for good measure...

This morning down town, was cold, until the sun came over the Sierra de Mijas and warmed my back up! Down at Bar Cruz, started off with a té, but followed up with hot chocolate, much bigger glass than the té too! Good old cola cao chocolate powder...

I took some trousers back to the shop today, they were smaller than I thought, or am I bigger than I thought!!! Nah, the first thing I think!

Yesterday in the shop a couple of women were walking around for ages, and one of them bought a belt, and stole a top! We didn't realise until she had left the shop and another customer commented on the top, as she had liked it too, but it had left the building.... how sad is it to have to steel from a charity shop!

It was also like summer yesterday, well maybe not the extreme heat of summer we have here, but it was a wonderful warm day, only its today I have put washing on the line and am waiting for the sun to make it over the town hall and onto our terrace to reach the clothes! I came home and went up there to have a read with a coffee, but after half hour came back down, too cold in the shade, and with wet hair!!

Today, I am going to write out our Christmas cards, infact as soon as I leave you, I am going to do it! I am going to put on a CD, that old classic "Its a Wonderful Life" by Frank Capra...

and I shall do it now!


ps, enjoy the song...

Coldplay - Christmas Lights

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Some random photos today, I am in a random mood!

Above and below out side the Globe Inn on the bank of the Grand Union Canal, on the outskirts of Linslade/Lieghton Buzzard, Bedfordshire...

Its a great pub, I was going to say little, but its quite big, there was a log fire burning and that smell was glorious. The food is pretty good too!

This is where I went with friends while I staying over.

Above is next doors[Tony and Kates] cat, the poor thing was seemingly out day and night! In the snow and ice! Patting at the door to come in, but we had to be strong, once in, it would have been cruel to turn it away next time....

This was the terrific view Tony had out of the windscreen on the morning we went up to see Barry in Nottingham.... Fog and snow, snow and fog!

I have just been reading back, and added a bit to a past post, a bit I remember now, but may not one day... I am having real trouble moving forward this week, I know this time last year, I knew it would be a miracle if Mom was still here this year and had thought ahead to now, but this isn't the now I thought I would feel.

I am always a bit of a procrastinator, but, I think I am almost moving backwards now! If I don't get a move on with our Christmas cards they will be arriving in time for Easter! Or not sent at all!

I want to just hole up and get in a little cocoon with warm milky drinks and soft sweet foods, I also want to slap myself out this feeling!

I enjoyed work this morning more than I thought I would, we had a laugh and although it wasn't very busy, we kept busy, and Thursday is the Christmas Bazaar which I am going in for, for just an hour or so...

We have some lovely Christmas lights up in the town so I will take some photos and post them soon. That's as soon as I have taken them!

I also want to take a friend to see the Alhaurín Nativity before she flys off to England for Christmas as I know she hasn't ever seen it!

We have bought the little lad next door his Christmas present, which I am in the mood for playing with! Its a small football table, his Dad will be pleased, he has to put it together first! And it doesn't look like a quick job either!

Talking of putting things off, I planned on writing the Christmas cards yesterday afternoon, put in a CD, The Golden Compass, as it happens, watched it to nearly the end, then fell asleep, woke up and had to find the bit in the CD to watch the last bit! Then came across a game on the PS3 which I couldn't leave alone!

... The Christmas cards? Nope never got round to doing them!


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Today is a page taken by a fellow blogger Positive Thoughts...


May you. . .

May you find serenity and tranquillity in a world
You may not always understand.

May the pain you have known and conflict you have experienced
Give you the strength to walk through life
Facing each new situation with courage and optimism.

Always know that there are those whose love and understanding
Will always be there, even when you feel most alone.

May you discover enough goodness in others
To believe in a world of peace.

May a kind word, a reassuring touch, a warm smile be yours
Every day of your life,
And may you give these gifts as well as receive them.

Remember the sunshine when the storm seems unending.

Teach love to those who know hate,
And let that love embrace you as you go into the world.

May the teaching of those you admire become part of you,
So that you may call upon them.
Remember, those whose lives you have touched
And who have touched yours are always a part of you,
Even if the encounters were less than you would have wished.
It is the content of the encounter that is more important than it's

May you not become too concerned with material matters,
But instead place immeasurable value on the goodness in your heart.

Find time in each day to see the beauty and love in the world around

Realize that each person has limitless abilities,
But each of us is different in our own way.
What you may feel you lack in one regard
May be more than compensated for in another.
What you feel you lack in the present
May become one of your strengths in the future.

May you see your future as one filled with promise and possibility.
Learn to view everything as a worthwhile experience.

May you find enough inner strength to determine your own worth by
And not be dependent on another's judgement of your accomplishments.

May you always feel loved.

Friday, December 10, 2010

I didn't dare look back to see when I last blogged amigos... Over two weeks ago, *red faced* and sorry, apologies mi amigos.... I don't know where I have been, physically yes, emotionally no...

So....... lets pull up a comfy wing backed chair, each [big room!], in front of the huge log fire, with a mug of creamy hot chocolate, and don't forget the marsh mallows on that for me! And I will begin...

... begin with the fact that I have had to make random notes in no particular order, just when I remembered things I have to tell you....

So, are we comfy? Then I will begin! See how I hesitate, what's the matter with me, I am amongst friends, ok, notes, and the photo above to get me going... Our little Nativity, that I have had since the mid nineties... I got it out of its boxes and put it in place Wednesday, my first real day home, as on my return I had a migraine [what's new], I took out all the people from their cosy homes in amongst the paper trimmings, and one was missing, and another chipped?

I really had to struggle to remember what could have happened, and after a couple of hours, I think when I put them away, in one heck of a hurry before going over to see Mom, and before the 12th night, I must have dropped one of the Kings surfs, and one of the other surfs base chipped... I am not really sure that's what happened, I can imagine I was in a hurry, but I truly have no recognition of putting them away.... You'll notice to the right of the stable, a little white speck of something, with a red top? That's a small snowman candle that has hung out there over the last few years.... He isn't a 'normal' Nativity symbol?

I noticed last evening when the candled flickered, that Mary, Jesus and the Angel's shadows moved on the back wall of the stable, it was a surreal moment until the candle calmed....

As I say Tuesday, lost to me altogether... It had been a nightmare trip home, friend dropped me off at Luton airport on Monday, about 11:30, maybe a bit early, thinking my flight was 2pm, not actually 2:40! So already an hour ahead of myself! Checked in quickly, only .02 over the 20kilo, and straight through the control check upstairs, being allowed into the express check in line! Muy bien!

Then it all went pear shaped[!], apparently our plane, coming in from Gibraltar couldn't land due to fog, so was sent to Birmingham, and another plane had to be found which could land and take off in fog, so it wasn't until 8pm we eventually took off for Spain.

There were many flights cancelled, or delayed, and I couldn't risk leaving my seat in search of food or drink, due to the many people sitting on the floors or just standing waiting for a chance of a seat, luckily I did have water and sweets! So I just sat, relaxed[sort of], and waited!

I cant remember having taken off in such dense fog, once on the run way approach, you could barely see the light from the terminal buildings any more, and when we had arrived, in day light, the top of the control tower was not even to be seen, only the leg!

The seating was changed to 'any seat' so bad luck for anyone who had paid extra for their extra leg room seat etc! But turned out I had a whole row to myself! As did all of us who just went up to the back!

The flight had been ok until the last half hour when we hit cloud over Spain, and the turbulence was awful! Not just up and down, but side to side! A bit of a white knuckle ride thrown in for good measure!

Franco was there to meet me and my rather foamy case, the foam turned out to be my mousse! The whole can had emptied out on route, leaving a few things moussed up and a bit damp! Apologies to other peoples cases ;-)

Once out into the night, now about midnight! The humidity was high, and home, the house felt humid too! It was about half past by then, and about 1am when we turned in...

I woke up with the migraine, and tried getting up about 5pm to get up, having breakfast, but it made me bad again, and didn't try again until Wednesday morning.... spent the day, emptying moussy case and housey stuff....

She looked ok... from a distance, and with the sun in your eyes.... Not me! Well maybe me, but I mean our car! Although up close, the peeling bumper, the poor paint condition, the scrapes and bumps and black ties!... apart from the lean to the left, she seemed to shassay up the road! Or it could have been a swagger! She didn't know she was on the way to be scrapped! Our poor baby car! She did us good for five years though for sure.. yesterday, Franco and I had been to the coast, got some bits and pieces, and home about 3pm! We were planning on staying in but had to go back down to the coast again, with our car, we got a call from a mate who could do the deed... So I drove the rental and Franco drove old Betsy[!] and down we went again!

The suspension finally gave up the ghost a week ago, and Franco had had to rent a car, we couldn't leave our car in the car park much longer, we had found a number in a paper of someone who would give us €100 and take the car, deal with the paper work and sell it on!!!! I one couldn't imagine anyone wanting to buy it, poor thing isn't road worthy any more and I would want some else risking life and limb driving it now! The last few days Franco had had some near misses with it! And also I couldn't have rested, I'm not sure if we would have received yearly tax bills, parking fines or speeding tickets, if not worse!

So hopefully this has been the right route and its bye bye baby, baby bye bye.... to our little Opal Corsa!

I got to walk Pippa yesterday morning, "at last" says Pip! And there was still a noisy cricket chirping away to remind me of summer, but not this morning, this morning there was a wayward wind, it didn't know which way to blow! Rain was for cast, and it has rained, not much, just a light sprinkling, I hadn't even noticed it rain, but just went up onto the terrace and its a bit damp!

This morning in town it was ok, little bit of sun even, but then as I was coming I could tell the rain was on its way... It was just cloud from over the Sierra de Mijas... but it felt heavy....!

We have one of those salt things, orangey and you put a tea light inside, do you know what I mean? Well when I moved the Nativity into place I found it was wet, not inside, but its outside and underneath, like it was melting... Very strange, but its made of salty stuff, I wondered if it was the humidity? I have been keeping a candle burning inside and it seems to be doing the trick!

I have had a couple of funny experiences to over the last couple of days... The first on Wednesday, I was using the little kitchen foldaway foot stall thingy, to give me a little more height to put the suitcase[minus mousse], back up on top of the wardrobe, when it slipped and hit the base of the wardrobe, and broke! Sending me flying! But I caught the case! With my face! And I was left having to just 'oike it up there! Pippa moved... she moved into the other bedroom when it broke!

Then today, I was changing the light bulb on the ceiling light on the landing... Franco had put the only spare bulb we had in there last week, a 25 watt! It was like poor candle light! So I am standing on the chair, and the the light fitting starts to move about a bit... horrible, its like at the market when the clothes are just floating on their rails... Same effect on me, vertigo, or something like! It makes my head swimmy! Anyway, no falling, and all done, we have light, bright light!

I have put up our tree, Franco says it looks a bit sparse... I'll have to get out the rest of the baubles! Not really in the Christmas spirit... And I must do our Christmas cards, cannot find the labels I had written out before I left for England, to take with me... Will probably find them, one day!

I brought a few things from an extra case that we couldn't bring back with us in March, an odd selection of things, wish they were things to do with the family now, the books with family names in etc, and any memorabilia, but I couldn't get to them in Tonys house...

I did bring back a camera of Mom's, I thought there were only 3 or 4 photos left to take and then I would get it processed, but as I turned the next picture, its a 'throw away' type, I have found, Mom had only taken 3 or 4 photos! I wonder what of though? so I will get the film used up as quickly as I can, to see....

In Nottingham, with Barry, they had the giant walk-in snow globe! Not sure if it was the one Mom and I went in at Milton Keynes, but there it was...

While I was in England and visiting family next door to Mom's it was a sad sad visit, I couldn't look at Mom's place, not the front room window, or the back door, it just tore my heart out all over again... When I left and walked away I felt like I had visited my Aunt and not Mom! And in the shops and on the streets where we would go, at every turn I thought I saw her... in one of her hats... just out of the corner of my eye... I have now been to lots of places we would go on my visits over, did it help? No not one iota, and I really thought it would, I was wrong. And just feel bereft all over again.

ok amigos, my notes are used up, and so am I, lots more to tell about my visit, happy things, but for now.... everybody out!


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

It would been better for Vodafone if I had at least spelt their name correctly... Sorry Vodafone! Was difficult enough typing on my phone, without having to worry about spelling!!!

The trip to London this morning went well, and very quickly!

My confidence was lacking before my trip, the amount of times I have travelled on the underground is impossible to count, yet I was nervous of going on my own, even if I am with someone who doesn't know the underground just being with someone is better isn't it... or is that just me!

Anyway, I got on the mainline train just fine, and off, and down into the tube, and walked directly to the Northern Line and straight onto the platform, only a short wait, a couple of minutes, time enough to watch a cute little grey mouse walking along the edge of the platform... so sweet, poor little thing! Then I was on, and off at the next station, Warren Street, where I had to run down the stairs, the escalator not working... but ran onto the waiting tube... on the Victoria line one stop to Oxford Circus! No more mice!

Topside and there over the road almost was John Lewis, where I met my friend! He said, the coffee shop third floor, but there was a coffee place on the 3rd 4th and 5th floors! So let him know I was on the 5th... We had a good catch up, since Mom's service, and then off our sepertate ways, I did the return trip just as quick, but the mainline was quicker.... the first stop for my train was here! Just 30 minutes, so very good, took me longer to walk home from the station than the trip from London!

Yesterday, I met up with Sarah, and we had a couple of coffee's and walk around Aylesbury, I had a few things I wanted to get, which I did, then had to carry them home! Which would have been ok if I had just walked home from the bus stop in town, but I wanted to be sure where the station was and get the ticket ahead of time, so it was a 45 minute walk home... I was shattered, and didn't think I would make it, which would have been funny.... not! And even though it was cold, I was boiling, all that walking and rushing about, and it was only just gone 4pm, maybe 4:30, and pitch dark!!!! Although its lighter here at 7am than back home in Spain, it is still light at 7pm in Spain, or was!

Tomorrow I am back on bus....

This morning was icy on the cars and the paths, but felt lovely and fresh and wintry!!!

Well here I am on line from my phone! Wonderful Voderfone have given me 500 minutes free internet time... Thing is I will need all of that just to tell you about it! I am at Euston station London, waiting to depart for Leighton Buzzard, its the first stop. It took me the journey down to set up! More later. . .

Friday, November 19, 2010

Below is a link to see the photos from our Cudeca inauguration on Wednesday... I am in two shots! All hair and a little face it seems!

Cudeca official opening in Alhaurín el Grande


Thursday, November 18, 2010


I am beginning my post today with a poem...

..... Keep Ithaka always in your mind,
Arriving there is what you're destined for.
But don't hurry the journey at all.
Better if it lasts for years,
so you're old by the time you reach the island,
wealthy with what you've gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaka to make you rich.

Ithaka gave you the marvellous journey.
Without her you wouldn't have set out.
She has nothing left to give you now.

by Cavafy about Ulysses

I posted this before, on Nov 30th 2009... on the day I came over to England... Mom was getting bad... and the above poem reminded me on how its the journey through life we should make good...


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Another hard day at work! Not quite so busy today, either in the store or in town actually! And when there are fewer people it just means we can get more stock out, and more tiding and cleaning done, so still lots to do...

I met up with the crew first of course, at the boardroom, for early morning networking! Lots of people away over the next couple of months, holidays to UK for, and before Christmas, our numbers will dwindle...

Tomorrow is the inauguration of our new store in town... our new Cudeca store that is. First we have a meeting, then drinks and bites to eat.... After the Mayor has done his stuff! So that's good, bit more advertising for the shop... wonder in Andalucia TV will be there again? I must make sure to wear something different from the two other times in less than 2 months they have caught me on camera!!!

Everyday many many emails are passing between my new cousin and myself, and Emma, the wonderful girl who has brought us together, who is still working, and finding some fantastic things out still...

The other night I was caught up in the search... Working backwards, sort of, I went straight to the graveyards! Luckily there are some people who must have wandered about the many cemeteries of the United Kingdom, writing down all the names and dates etc, on the tomb stones... Then listed them all here on the net!

While I searching I came across a... well an interesting inscription to a Mr Thomas Collier to died back in 1765, Blacksmith of his parish... in Rodborough, Gloucestershire at St Mary Magdalene's Churchyard... it reads...

Thomas COLLIER of this parish,
Blacksmith, 23 Nov 1765, 52
My sledge & hammer is declined
My bellows to have lost its wind
My fire extinct, my forge decayed
And in the dust my vice is layd
My coal is burnt, my irons gone
My nails are drove, my work is done
Elizabeth, w/o Thomas COLLIER,
10 Feb 1785
Benjamin, s, 16 Aug 1790, 41

Interesting isn't it, morbid? No.... I remember thinking when I went over to England next, I would take a trip to Crouch End, as I thought my Gt Grandparents were burined there... and now I know they're not!

I also used to wish when I was a kid, that I was miss smith, from 'simple address' with a normal Mom and Dad and siblings, all the family nearby who had always lived in the same place for all of time..... now I marvel at fact that life is so strange and so exciting, if a little confusing at times! And none of my family, on either my Dads, or my Mom's side ever stayed put.... Thousands of miles our family has travelled, must be why I feel so tired!

Ok to the present again, before I go off on yet another tangent.... Our car broke down again yesterday! Franco went up to the get the car and came back after ten minutes, it had been a non starter for the last few days.... At La Trocha market on Sunday, it started ok in the car park, but not outside the Brit food shop on our way home! And this had happened a few times... But yesterday, hopeless, Franco took up the battery charger, not because it was a battery problem, but he was wearing it down with all the trying to start it!

Franco phoned down to say it still wasn't starting, and I went up... came back home, and then went back up again! We called out the grua [breakdown], and after about 40 minutes I came back to the house to get a flask of coffee!!!! It was cold up there! The Mayor came out and down the back stairs of the town hall... shared a coffee with us! Just kidding! He may have thought we had moved in, or were spies! watching his every move!

So the grua phoned, he couldn't find the ayuntamiento[town hall], I walked up to the side of the Vera Cruz church, he called again and eventually found us! He was in a BMW estate car! He jumped out of his car, round to back pulled out his jump leads... and Franco and I both said, "no not the battery"... He then did this test and that test, then said he would have to called the grua pick up truck as he couldn't fix it on site, but then turned to and said did I have a mirror.... I didn't but offered him my mobile, in camera mode and said put that under and just take a photo of the bit you want... He looked confused, I don't know why, would have worked for me!

So down he got under the car on what looked like a yoga mat! and then after only a few seconds jumped up and our car started! A wire was loose from under the solenoid! all those bumpy roads down to the caost, you know since they shut the Fuengirola road we have had had more fall off our car than you would believe! Exhaust pipe, nuts and bolts ie holding the front panel on! Two tires, well they didn't fall off but were ruined all the same!

And apparently, so says the local news the road will open in the next two weeks or so.... I bet while I am away! What'its law isn't it! Its all tarmac, only white lining and a few more bits, and most important, barriers!

Well I am tired, have some washing to check on, when I got home I washed some woollies for my holiday... I did them as usual on the terrace, although, this I am whispering... Our washing machine worked on Sunday.... we talked to man at the market, just for any inside information on what the problem could be with it... He was a sexist... saying that Franco would be who would be fixing it! huh! It would be more likely to me me! He apologised!

Anyway, its probably dry now, the washing, so adió amígos...


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Just realised I didn't blog yesterday? I though I had told you about my trip down to the Cudeca hospice, obviously not!

Well after a brief networking meeting at the boardroom aka té with mates outside Bar Cruz, I was down to the shop to meet up with the other going down to the hospice.

The mini bus arrived on time, mas ó menos! And off we went, we had a couple of women from the Marbella store already on board, the driver then took the longest and slowest route possible to get down to Arroyo de la Miel, an hour... via Fuengirola to pick up the volunteers from the store.

We went in and had coffee and biscuits before all sitting down for a brief talk, which was very good and informative, telling us mostly what we already do, but good to hear it over again, and to remind some people what we are supposed to be doing, and why... I think there were about 80 people, 78 women and 2 men, one guy was in a kilt... not sure why exactly, maybe it was his normal day ware???

We had opportunity to say anything we wanted to after Katie had finished, only a few did, some good ideas to add, others not... Then we had a questionnaire to fill out, not from Cudeca, but from a company who donates, they want what sounds like proof of where they're money is going, and photo evidence also...

We then had a tour of the hospice, all the facilities and services for people who visit either during the week, or to stay... They have everything to make life easier for people, in a calm place, with beautiful gardens, the rooms have they're own small shady patio area, and an extra bed in the room for family to stay over...

One room was vacant and we all went in to have a look and check out the interior, while Katie was talking about things in there I was wishing I wasn't in there... It was the first time I had been in a hospital room which just reminded me of Mom's room in the care home, I am still to raw and was upset being in there, then when we came out we collected together by the tiles, you can pay to have peoples names etc decorated onto tiles that run the length of the hospice and turn the corner now, that was staggering to see, although not all the people have passed on... I just only saw those that had.

It was a good visit, and I am glad that at last I have seen the place that the money goes to where I am working again now, and did for a couple of years previously. And next time someone asks for the item to be reduced from 2€ to anything less, I will have more feeling when I say "no"! If they knew exactly where it was going they wouldn't have the cheek to ask, maybe?

And the return journey was longer... we dropped the Fuengirola girls off first, then the Marbella two! Then to Alhaurín, back to the shop. I made a fatal error of getting as far as CJ's... before remembering that Pip had no food in the shoue, and that Mercadona was, by then, the only place open, so I did an about turn and walked all the way back! Got the food and then the walk back home, and got in about 4:15pm, shattered, fed Pip and had a nap!!!

Our car was playing up, again, but Franco thinks it was just a loose spark plug, it kept cutting out yesterday and the day before, but hopefully now... For such an old car it kept going about 4 years longer than we ever thought it could... and those black ties and super glue help!!

Today I copied out all the names and address's in my Grand dads little address book, from 1920! This little book is nearly a hundred years old! In the last couple of days has been opened and closed and pages turned more than in the past fifty years... at least!

As I was typing out the list I was googling the odd one or two, and I think I found one ladies name in the obits in Canada! Everything matched up! Shame she is'nt a relative though... Still amazed me finding her like that! Also my Gt Gt Grand dad, is playing hard to trace, so I looked in the church burial listings for the area we think he was in, found a guy by his name, but seems the name is quite popular... Still fun looking... and you never know...

My *new* cousin and I still can't get our heads around it all, I can't wait to get up to Javea to meet her, unbelievable we are both here in Spain isn't it?

Ok, been on here long enough today, think a piece of cake and custard is calling to me from the kitchen, now, second night with a glass of red wine, remember I opened that bottle the first night my cousin and I spoke, so last night and tonight I thought I better drink a bit more before I end up throwing it away and is the norm in our house! I don't think its doing me any good though, and I thought red wine was good for your heart? My heart beat is more irregular than normal!

I am sooooo glad this auto saves as this whole page just disappeared and when to my gmail, when I hit the back arrow, it didn't bring me back here.... I would not have typed this whole lot again... Oh thats reminded me, at last, when the clocks went back the other week... Walking Pippa was so much better, but even now a couple of weeks later, the sky has never gone back to being as dark as it was before the clocks changed... Which is good! But strange....


Thursday, November 11, 2010

At The Cross

Just a short chat today, definitely been over doing it these last couple of days... Been worth every second of it, emails back and forth, family out about family, and family secrets! Found out something about my Dad, bet my Mom has given him an earful by now... Or did she know? Seems I had another step Mom before Carol, and didn't ever know it!

Its been like rushing through the past on a time machine, gaining speed rapidly... I can't wait to meet my 'new' cousins! I still can't believe we have been so close in miles all the time really... Both in England and here in Spain!

The YouTube music above... I have just come across and is so beautiful, worth a listen.... and take time out to relax while you do...


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Mom and I on her passport.... Awwwww!

I havent stopped today since I came home, so much to do, documents and photos to scan and email to ad to our family tree, as I said on fb, a tree now heavy with history! I am still in a state of shock I think! Its so amazing to be *found* like this, there was I hunting them! As much as I could, and the promise I made to Mom... oh if only she were here now, if only this had been a year ago, one cousin died this year also, he died in Bath, Somerset, on my birthday as it happens... but when Mom and I did our little trip last March we were quite near to him then!

And my cousin I have spoken with now who lives here in Spain! She was probably not more than an hour away at most when we were both living back in England! Never mind the fact we may have walked past each other when I was staying further up the coast with friends!

The problems I have had scanning today, the HP printer/scanner we have only works on Franco's lap top, I scanned 16 or 17 items, and hit the send button to email them... but it came up not possible to send... and the box had gone, along with the items! I expect there there somewhere, but I tried to hunt them down, in the *find* writing in English wont work of course, as its in Spanish!

I had to re scan all of it, and save to file, then open up email to send them to myself, to open on my net book, save in my pictures, cut them about a bit etc, then send on!

Then I had trouble sending them, well not sending them, they got bounced back by the receivers email and had to send them via Picassa and only one by one! Phew...

Hope I am ok tomorrow, as yesterday had a very bad head, was a bit iffey before I went down into town, had a cup of tea, and then once I was in work I got a lot worse, the worse being my head ache, but the rest wasn't far behind!!!

I left work quarter hour early, got home and went to bed! Whatever the national average is for being in bed... someone must be missing out of lots, to make up for me sleeping in mine so much!

I got up about 5pm? Something like that, still so excited about suddenly having all this new family history, and cousins, that are here, and now! Then Franco and I had a late night, and once in bed it was difficult to sleep, Franco was restless, Pippa was cold, so on our bed [I know, I know, but she is our baby!], only thing is she wanted to sleep across the bed and we had to accommodate, only I wouldn't, so had to keep moving her off, then I was hot and opened the window and all we could hear was some dog down in the valley I think, barked all night long, heard the rubbish man dragging his bin up the street, and the alarm went off... all too soon!

I have been too busy on here today to catch up on any of last nights missed sleep, so hopefully, tonight?

And the rain that was forecast never came, wonderful day for drying clothes, I didn't get it on the line until after town, and brought it in four hours later, jeans and sweaters all dry... Lovely, considering I am washing them up on the terrace remember... Never did get a wash board though! Just wet feet!

This morning, net working, of course, outside Bar Cruz, we sit at the boadroom table, and the people come and go, usually the last to go are a completely different lot than starts there! Today one of our *group* of networkers brought in a drawing he had done, inspired by an Oncé lady in town, [Oncé is the lottery for the blind, actually saying that, I think it could be the deaf too, and diabled, seeings how the two woman are deaf and the guy who sells it also is in a wheelchair], anyway, I digress as is the norm! So the wonderful drawing inspired by an Oncé girl! The other day, Saturday, there were a couple of us networkers left at the boardroom table there by Bar Cruz, and the Oncé girl came past, she was on her mobile phone, she is deaf, and she was holding out her mobile phone and signing via the video option to a friend! How fantastic is that Technology again! I cant imagine not having this now, or fb, with all my family and friends there, that if not for fb I would feel so so far away from now... and Skype... Twitter? Well its fun in its own way, and I enjoy reading all the people I follow! And the interaction, like the other evening, I was listening to LBC Radio, and *Twittering*, one of presenters who was on air, answered me whilst he was on air!

Ok, think I am all done in for today now.... I need to rest! Or at least calm down...

adió amigos..

Monday, November 08, 2010

Well amigos...Have I got news for you!

And I don't know where to begin! Well, last night I read my hotmail emails, I actually hadn't opened up hotmail for a couple of days... doh! And there was an email from someone who had found some of my information on very very interesting!

I couldn't believe what she had to say, her surname being the same as my Grand Dads, I initially thought she was a relative of mine, but turns out she was tracing someone else's family tree... Which turns out to be part of my family tree!

.... and the mega promise I made to Mom on the last day she was able to talk has been fulfilled, I never thought I would be able to do so... I'm sure Mom knows, I have had goosebumps all the time I have been doing, or talking about it this afternoon! Either that or I'm coming down with a chill!

This afternoon I got back home from town, switched this on and another email in my in box! This wonderful, wonderful girl has been working on behalf of the Grand daughter of one of my Grand Dads brothers... I have seen photos of my Grand parents on her tree, so strange seeing them there!

I could tell Mom that of the two brothers who went to Brazil, one didn't stay long, the other came back eventually, but another brother did move there, stayed and died there...

A cousin moved to Canada, we're all over the world! This cousin became a Canadian citizen who fought during WW2, he landed at Normandy on D-Day, was so badly injured he only lived another couple of days and is buried there... He also has a bay on a lake in Canada named after him!!

I am in such amazement over it all! My head is spinning, and its not a migraine for once, I had my dinner earlier than normal, I think I had burnt up so much energy I was starving! I also have a glass of wine by my side, well empty now... So much information gone into my head I thought it was going to explode!

And, wait for it.... and I have spoken to my cousin! I get confused how many cousins away, my Grand dads Daughter would have been my Mom's cousin, so my 2nd cousin, her daughter, my 3rd and Linda who I spoke to my 4th? Is that right!! I don't know, what matters is we have found each other and spoken.... And you'll never guess, her and her family live here in Spain! Well... of course eh! They lived in Hertfordshire before... Same as us!

I have been going through all the things I have, old documents, an old address book, names, addresses, dates etc, I am going to scan and email everything to both Emma, who has brought us together, and to Linda, can't wait to meet her now! Two years ago, is it two or longer? Anyway, when I was staying with friends up in Cumbre del Sol I was only about 15 minutes away from her...

I better get cracking now, so much to do, dust is piled high around the tv, floors to sweep, bathroom to clean! Been sat here all afternoon, so before I collapse with excited fatigue... adió amgios i think...

I want to phone my Mom even more than usual now, I so want her to know....


Sunday, November 07, 2010

A Quote today from Paulo Coelho's Blog...


All philosophy lies in two words, sustain and abstain.

First learn the meaning of what you say, and then speak. All religions must be tolerated… for every man must get to heaven in his own way. Freedom is the right to live as we wish...




Saturday, November 06, 2010

Good and busy day in Cudeca yesterday, so many more people coming in to this new shop, as I may have mentioned before[?], yesterday someone told me that lots of her friends didn't even know of the other shops existence in c/Fuengirola, that only the ones who had children did, the school gates being just opposite the old shop, which is now not used.

Thursday I had the doctors, went in on time mas o menos, which was good, after the two hour wait the time before! I took a friend in to help translate, telling her ahead of time what the visit was all about, to prepare her!

When I am back from my visit to England I have to go in to have checks on my hips and heart! And I have enough meds to last me till then, we were only in there about 5 minutes which was good.

And this morning down to town, popped into friends on the way to collect her, and to check on her tv, she phoned me this morning to say the volume wasn't working, no sound, but when we finished our call and she switched it back on it worked fine! No luck with my friends lottery this morning though, the luck was quick and ran out of town!

We sat outside Bar Cruz, of course! We were joined by a couple of friends just as we were leaving, so had to stay for another cuppa!

But earlier on we were talking about stuff, you know, this and that, and something brought us round to special things, fancy candles, dinner services, clothes, even a favorite cup or mug, you get my gist don't you?

Oh I remember what it was, my friend had a beautiful bracelet on, and hadn't worn it for some time... Anyway, it reminded me of an email from yonks ago, about using special things, not just leaving them to gather [metaphorical] dust, to use those special cups or mugs, to wear the wonderful clothes, eat from classy plates... and for goodness sake burn those gorgeous candles... what's going to happen to them if you don't get round to it?

We should use and appreciate these special things, that's what they're for... Like ourselves. We are given a life to live, special lives every one, what would that be if we didn't use our lives to their fullest, you don't have to have money or live a grand life, be thankful for everyday, for all the things you do have, [there are some rotten things we don't have after all are there not!].

A simple walk, really looking at things and not just walking about as if your eyes are closed to the world, the air we breath, the sun on our skin, or rain! All of nature...

Everyday is a gift... We shouldn't waste a moment, like the beautifully constructed candles, we should glow brightly from beginning to end... Each lighting our place in this world.


Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Woah! Not blogged since Friday? That cannot be right? Its Wednesday evening now... My Memories isn't so great to remember so far back, need to do more puzzles and games!

So, I think I might have forgotten mention the bogus gas men we have that keep coming around! That's a bit of sarcasm there, sorry amigos! Only I may have forgotten the bit about the two that came to the house, hammering on the front door? I tried to get rid of them, but they wouldn't go, so luckily Franco was here [actually, did I tell you this?], so Franco and these two guys were out on the street shouting! Always shouting going on on our street eh! This time us! Eventually they left... But this was the final trigger to sort out our gas contract etc...

So a legitimate gas man came, from Guadalgas company in de la Torre, we were given his name and phone number, and when he called to arrange the appointment his name came up on the phone... great! He came as arranged yesterday afternoon at 2pm, we did have a gas leak, he changed the few bits that needed changing, we could see they needed it, the cooker was fine, all the parts, and nothing needed doing there, although we had heard the section coming out from the back of the cooker had to be steel[?], but not to worry, probably a bogus gas man collecting on someone's vulnerability! Including a new contract, which will last five years for this house, the cost was 111€... A lot of money, but its done, and legal and we're all safe now, Franco often would light the boiler, unknowingly with the gas leak going on right in front of his face!

We spent the weekend down at Maria's... It was *Game Over* for the trick 'o treater's this year...

Franco and I went down early on Saturday, got a few bits and pieces of shopping, relaxing the rest of the day, Sunday too! There was no stopping us, just relaxing! Well, for me, trying to relax, no internet, I took some books I never read, we just watched tv really, and I still had the thing I do with the candles, food etc, for All Souls day, and night, and the names beneath my candles this year had grown by far too many, 15 more names than last year... And unbeknown's to me, another friend died on Saturday, gave up her fight against cancer....

My Mom's name on the top of the other names/hearts, I must have been in denial, because I never, ever, imagined her there.... I had a bad time really, looking at the flickering candle mostly, talking to Mom in my head, all I think is, this time last year, this time last year....

So, there's Mom and [Step] Dad up there! Dad is wearing his work clothes... What a wonderful apron, full of his paints and staining materials... Mom's cup seems to be matching her outfit there! Heck, wish I had shown her this! This day was a visit from Carol, my Step Mom who was over from Los Angeles... So long ago, now, the boys were little, have a photo of them too.... hang on let me look...


Nope not scanned onto here... Phew says Barry and Tony!

Back home on Monday morning, back to the here and now by the way.... keep up folks! Franco did some more of the red rubber paint work up on the terrace, so now two thirds done now, Pippa just does not understand the concept of wet paint, we told her her feet would be rubberised for life if she kept that up! Little red Wellington boots, wouldn't she look cute!

And yesterday, Tuesday I was back in Cudeca, very very good day, loads of people in the shop, all buying, and loads of incoming stock, I went over the road for coffies and bought four little biscuit things for a treat, for all our hard work, and the lady in the shop gave me four other lovely biscuits free, cant be bad! She said she wanted to look around the shop, but was open the same time as us, longer in fact either side, and I offered to watch the shop for her, all the wonderful cakes and pastries.... Yummy, not much would left when she came back I said, it would all be in my belly! She laughed, don't know why I was being perfectly serious!

Doctors tomorrow, taking a friend with me to translate... See how we go, so much to tell the doctor and my lessons, and time here so far hasn't included all the medical stuff I need to say, and more, to understand. Another friend is going to doc's an hour before me and has a translator going with her too! We should have shared an appointment!!! Maybe not eh!!

Franco did some more painting yesterday too, but inside, up the stair well, [down the stair well?], and this morning we went down to Fuengirola and had a coffee with friends, we went to the bar that me and the boys first went in back in 1989!!! Only now none of the same staff are there, one was, up to about five years ago.... This morning two guys pitched up outside, one with a guitar and the other a keyboard, amplifier etc, and they were brilliant! People were stopping and enjoying their music, the two guys were really enjoying themselves too, really getting into it, laughing and smiley, not the sort where your trying to get past as fast as you can... They moved on and played in the church square after our bar...

When we said our goodbyes, we headed off to Aki[like Homebase etc, do it yourself store], we needed to get some grilles, we have to put them in the back door, and the kitchen door, to help with ventilation, although we never really shut the kitchen door.... We also have to put one in the outside wall at the front of the house, not sure where, or how! When the reform was done RSJ's run around the both side walls and the ceiling, and there is no gap big enough for a grille! Still the gap around the front door is wider than the gap between the trains and the platform at Berkhamsted train station! A *Mind the gap!* sign should be hung above it!


Friday, October 29, 2010

Mom is having her name read out in St Mary's on Sunday, did I mention that already? Wish I could be there to hear...

Worked in Cudeca this morning, just for a couple of hours, and am working Friday next week also, short on staff at the moment, was a busy couple of hours, the time goes by very fast in there, and on Fridays there are two Spanish speakers which is good, good for customers, but good for us too, more practice!

This evening my friend and I went to the Case de Cultura and the exhibition there of art work by Mary Gregoriy, which encompassed prints and medallic art. Once again Andaluz TV was there, we laughed and said whoever is watching it will say, "there's those two woman again..." me and mate being caught on camera the other week when Margo and Kat left for Timbuktu...

The work was wonderful, quirky, just my cup of tea! Slightly on the edge of reality, or caught between here and there, not sure how to describe it... Anyway, I could very happily live with, and stare at for hours, quite a few pieces... A nice glass of wine and some tapas too, quite a few people I knew... And afterwards we stopped for a café con leche in one of the bars at Plaza Baja!

On my way home from work I stopped for coffee with a friend who had phoned me earlier and was waiting up near home at Plaza Alta[!], I got home about 3:30pm! But before I got home, before I could see our house, I could hear shouting, and people were hanging out of door ways, and upper balcons, when I came round the corner there was a woman shouting outside a doorway! Shouting at a poor woman standing opposite, and she turned the corner up towards the Ayuntamiento, when I got to the turn she was just standing there out of sight crying!

I got into the house a few minutes before there was a roar of noise and two police motor bikes came up the street, followed by a four x four with two more officers, followed ten minutes later by a police car, 6 police in total! All for this one woman who was still screaming about I don't know what! The older lady and a man seemed to be the reason she was having a temper tantrum!

It went on for well over an hour! I gave up, as did most of the people in the street, so not sure what happened to them all! There was a bit of a croud outside our houses and much talking, and laughter!

Oh talking of laughter, before I went into Cudeca this morning, friend and I were having a drink, té for me, don't know why I have to say what I was drinking, just outside a bar, the word *drink* makes me think, you will think, I mean alcohol!!

Anyway, I digress, as usual, so we're sitting there, chatting and laughing about something, and then something else, I mean, you have got to laugh haven't you? No need to be sad, or grumpy, or nothing... A woman was standing a couple of feet away, leaning on a wall reading a paper, I noticed her, but didn't think why was she there, or anything about her at all actually.... Until she closed the paper and said "ha ha ha... risa risa risa [laugh laugh laugh]" She then walked around us still going "ha ha ha" sounding so sarcastic! Into the bar she went, came out again without the paper, still looking at us doing the "ha ha ha, risa risa risa", then passed us again and still sarcastically going "ha ha ha"...

Franco has just said, in the Sur newspapers that the Alhaurín to Fuengirola road, will definitely open in December, a promise.... And English plated cars are being impounded....

Adió amigos


Thursday, October 28, 2010

So someone else got locked out of their house this week then David Cameron! Picked this up care of someone I follow on Twitter... Only difference is, i didn't have any staff in the house to let me back in, and however much I think Pippa is more human than dog... She is still unable to open the front door!

This morning Franco and I went to Alhaurín de la Torre, and to the poligino, [industrial estate] on the outskirts of the town, we followed a couple of streets and asked a couple of people[no help], and came to the company Guadalgas all by ourselves!

In we went, we spoke Spanish, as much as we could, and he understood us fine, although his English turned out to be better than our Spanish, but he thought we wanted to practice!!! Well yes maybe, but not when it comes to such important matters eh!

So, he was a fantastic help, we will be getting a call from his office, and so in these circumstances I will be arranging an appointment from an in coming call, because it is only if we, the consumer makes that call, that we know its the legal deal!

So said, as much as the lady yesterday, do not allow fraudulent [estafa] gas men in, he said the uniforms are easy to copy, only let them in if you have previously made the appointment yourself, and do not phone a number they may give you to check, if they give you the number, its their accomplices who are on the other end of that call!!!

So [its all *so* today isn't it!], So, they are calling and I have the name of the person who will call, and an appointment will be made and we will have our system checked, metal pipework put in where necessary, by law the new the connection from cookers must be a metal tube which the home owner can attach the rubber pipe... At the moment we have the rubber pipe coming out directly from the cooker... Well so be believe, will let you know!

As we were so close [sort of] to Ikea, we went there! Franco needed to get some things for a friend, we had a coffee, I don't think some people know that even though the rest of the store is still not open, you can go in and up in the elevator to the restaurant, and get fuelled up for the trip around the store! There were loads of people milling around down stairs, and when they came up, we were already sat down with our coffee's and a snack! A lot of them came into the restaurant, they must have wondered how the heck we got in there so fast and sat down!

We got a new chopping board, a good wooden one, I have always used a wooden board, as far as I believe they're better, healthier,

From T&G product care.. Quote -

Wooden boards are very hygienic, as recent research carried out at a leading American University has proved. Their findings have shown that wooden surfaces are capable of decontaminating themselves, without the aid of bleach or harsh cleaning solutions.

It is not entirely clear how woods defence mechanism works, but seemingly the bacteria are sucked into the porous surface and “strangled” by the anti-microbial chemicals with which living trees protect themselves.

Their tests proved that bacteria died very quickly on wood, but thrived on boards made from all types of polymer and rubber, and wood was simply the best hygienic choice. UN quote

So[!] We got a great board, it fits over the counter, from back to front that is! Its lip going over the edge of the counter top, I have oiled it, taken out the splinter I got whilst doing so! And should now last for years and years and years... ad infinitum...

Our last one was destroyed this past winter, I don't think Franco had used it since I went away, and by the time we came back in June it had gone green with mould and cracked, we had been using the tiniest cutting board in the whole world... And I have very nearly lost a finger or two cutting up without anything and using my hand as a board! Seeing Jamie Oliver every day using a fantastic looking wooden board which is a slice of a tree trunk, literally! It still have bark round the edge, got me wanted to replace the one we lost...

Ok, completely rambling now, so adió amigos...



Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Well I went from feast to famine with my Blog didn't I!

Wednesday already and not a whisper from me for five days!

We had had a flyer in the mail box from the *Gas men*[maybe], apparently they did come round our street on Monday, the neighbours next door said they had called!

We went to see the lady down at our Casa de Cultura, now we have our foreigners department! She said you should never, EVER, let anyone into your house you have not invited in! Only a Repsol man, or someone they have commissioned, and only if you have phoned them to make an appointment and they tell who the company shall be, and the name of the engineer who will come, then, and only then can you let them in!!!

No one has any right to just say they are here to check out your gas pipes etc. Someone I was speaking to yesterday had let *them* in, and they went to an ATM with her so she could get money out to pay them! Scandalous!

The lady also gave me a phone number to call, its the mobile number of the police who drive around the town 24hrs a day, and although they change shifts, the number remains the same, she said if anyone comes to the door and won't leave, just call and they will get rid of them!

By the way, we saw two gas men down a street on our way to the Casa de Cultura!

Franco dropped me at the top of the high street later and I went into town, popped into my mate who works in the animal shop... she said I was a spy... because now I am back in Cudeca!

Yesterday, in Cudeca, in the new shop! Its great, a much better location, lots of people coming in who otherwise may not have even known the shop existed, up a side street where it was before...

Was busy anyway in the shop, and I was exhausted when I came out, got to our house just before 2pm, then found I didn't have the house key! Unbelievable! Luckily we leave a spare up the road and round the corner with friends, un luckily, they were out!

I came back down, knocked on our neighbours door, and asked for two favours, one to leave my stuff there, secondly to have a piece of paper and pen to write a note to put into friends house, for when they came home!

A much welcome third favour was they let me stay at they'res after I had gone back up the road to put the note through!

I didn't have the right bag either, so no glasses! No pen, no anything in it! Although that wasn't why I didn't have the keys, Franco was still at home and I think as I just left the house without having to lock up... I don't know! First time for everything, hopefully the last, and by luck I saw my friend who I leave the spare key with down town this morning, and gave it back to her, luckily remembering to even take it out with me this morning!

The note I had left under her door, I hadn't even put my name on it, just my number and that I hadn't got my key and needed the spare... I wasn't with it... She came home just after 4pm, so after collecting the key, I came home and put my self to bed with a painkiller, bad head and bad pain!

We went somewhere Monday morning? Can't remember where, but we did stop over in the garden centre on the Fuengirola road for a coffee... A friend was wandering round there so we asked her over to join us for coffee, then back to home...

And Sunday Franco painted about a third of the roof terrace with the rubber paint, we will finish it.... Soon! We had more rubbish up there which we have put out for the bin men, can't believe how much stuff they take...

I am having to fix typos alot today, I think I will leave you now, maybe I'm tired.... talk to you soon...

Before I go, just popped back to this time last year... I feel so different from only a year ago, my Mom, not being in this world has completely changed mine... Its shifted, at a kilter, and now will go on on this thread... Her going is still too big a thing to fit into my head, I still can't believe it, still want to phone her every day, still think she is back in Northchurch sitting in her arm chair and that I really should be phoning her in a minute... I imagine her in there, then the reality hits with a massive *bang* and I see her little palace as I left it, bereft, like me, empty...

I am still consumed with my grief, so badly that I hadn't seen [on fb], that the Mom of a dear friend of mine had passed away... She helped me through when my Mom was in hospital and before, and since. And me? I am still now whimpering on about me...


Friday, October 22, 2010

Some more of the wonderful murals on the church at Cómpeta...

Its another very steep mountain town as you can see, and next time we go, we shall see some more!

This little chap was on the round about as we were coming back towards to the coast... And if you look closely you will see the name of the town at his feet!

Here is an attractive photo... a mill maybe? Cement works? The Med is there immediately oposite on the left.... This is at Rincon de la Victoria [I think I am remembering this correctly...]

We had another flyer saying the gas men were coming today, did I tell you? So spent day in hiding! Well almost, went into town this morning, and kept persianas down all day, great isn't it! Hiding in our own home! If this was England, I wouldn't be worried about con men calling, you turn them away, simple[s]... But here, all official looking, and who to call? Or rather how to call and how to say what you want to tell them, my fault I know, not speaking enough Spanish, but that's it! If a man came saying he was from the gas board in England, you would just say hang on, and call the gas board, just not so easy here...

Heard about a woman today, while we were talking about bogus gas men, she let them into her house, first mistake, then they did some soldering, not sure why, but couldn't have been much, and then they charged her 5,000€, yes that's five thousand euros! She had 1200€ with her and gave them that, they said she couldn't pay the remaining amount into a bank account, it had to be cash.... hello!!!! They said they would be back, they haven't yet....

We're going to contact the gas company, and get them to come out by appointment and do us a new contract if necessary. Then it will be done, and I can relax... maybe....


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Nearly finished the [Sunday] trips worth of photos!

Above as we approached Cómpeta... Very big town, and one to return to when open! And on a week day me thinks!

It was a welcome sight too after what seemed like forever to reach when we left Torrox pueblo...

I am afraid we didn't actually see very much of the town, we were very tired by the time we got here... And the walk up to this church did us both in!

So we only left the car at the bottom of this very street, walked to the plaza at the top, and walked back down to the car!

At the church above, to the right an arch way, below, and to the side of the church, some very beautiful art work, another photo tomorrow....

I went into the Farmacia this morning and was told to take only the new meds I was prescribed yesterday! An English woman translated what I was [trying]saying to the woman at the counter... She said she had the same problem with the original meds I was on, a cough, its an allergic reaction! Oh and I am taking it in the morning! Now I know that's what I am supposed to do!

Franco and I did our shop in Mercadona this morning, so Franco bought home the bacon today, not Mercadona man!

Then I had tea in town with friends, first going into Cristinas to print out some flight itineraries! Two for others, one for myself!


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I'm a plonker! [don't answer that], thought photo up loads were disabled at the moment, then just realised... No in my time zone! Doh!

So above, a fountain in the beautiful village of Frigiliana!

And now we are moving on to Torrox... in the mountains, I didn't take any photos down at Torrox costa...

So above the approach to the village of Torrox, well town really I guess, you drive along side it, then drop back into the town... Like Frigiliana views of the Med....

An old church... I'm sorry its a church with no name... As we were moving quickly past it! Not good enough, hang on... No sorry, cant find the name... It was very pretty though tucked away round the corner, and suddenly your upon it, with the beautiful Cross there...

The tiny arches here are Arab... Franco there going to read the signs!
Only me... No photos, the system is disabled for a couple of hours so shall just up date me!

Not much... Had doctors appointment this morning 10:08am, got there at ten to ten, just in case[s]...

Went in two hours later, yes you heard right, TWO HOURS!!!

I told her I had been taking the bp meds at night, the one tablet, she said it should have been taken in the mornings! I said I had asked the farmacia and that's what they said! I suppose if she had made her self clearer, I could have had this information from her!

And I do understand por la mañana, and por la noche! So!

She saw the readings were still too high so said for me to take two tablets, por la mañana! She also wrote, en español a note for me to translate when I got home!

I told her about a strange cough I had acquired soon after taking the meds, and she ripped up the note, and did a new prescription, I said, 2 tablets still, she said No 1!!!

Well I just went to the farmacia and got the tablets, and google'd them, glad I did, because I thought they were throat medicines! Turns out they're blood pressure medicines!

So good job I did check or I would have taken one of each!

I have to go back to see her in 15 days time, this time, and I hope I can find someone to come with me, someone who speaks fluent Spanish, well that's the easy bit, being in Spain!!! I suppose I mean, someone who speaks both Spanish and English! Or I wont be much better off will I!!!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Ok amigos... We're still in Frigiliana! Above, a church! We were sitting near it, waiting to be served, before leaving, as we never were, along with a few others who gave up!

This little house above was very funny! There were all these signs to the left/right/both doors, promising strange weird and wonderful surprizes for anyone who put 50c or 20c into the slot above the peep hole thingies! I put 20c into the door on the right and there was a kaleidoscope of colors! And that was it! Franco put 50c into the one offering a promise of a desert island, something like, he said "quick have a look at this" I did, there was a yellow[sand?] circle turning to represent an island maybe? Little cut out palm trees and a setting sun! I was just pulling my camera towards the hole to take a photo when a stream of water poured out of a thing at the top of the door!!!!! Muchas gracias!

We climbed these steps and turned a left at the top... the pathways around the town were all cobbled, although rubbed smooth from time, and patterned, very pretty....

If you look close, or zoom in, there is a restaurant through this pretty arch way....

And a view from the top! High high above the town... We were almost in the avocado patch by this time!!!!


Monday, October 18, 2010

Well, after that long Blog, [to follow] confused? I have blogged already, but ran out of photo upload space, so here are the photos that belong with the blog below... And surely I cannot confuse you by now!

I have had to up load from my camera first, and rename! Stress! Well not so much stress and just too tired... But done now, hope you like them, five at a time, so will take most of week to get through!

Top pic from where we had parked the car looking up towards to village... Oh of Frigiliana of course!

In the village now... Starting the steep walk up hill, all the way!

Isn't this pretty... Its a shop and all the metal work is for sale!

There are many many twists and turns, we only covered a very small part of it, we know... Some spectacular views over to the Mediterranean... Glistening in the near distance...

These are very small, so zoom in better to see greater details!

and to the rest of today's Blog.....