Saturday, 18 December 2010

A Funny thing happened on the way from the Funeral

Packed car parks in the afternoon an hundreds of black clad old biddies homing in on the church like beetles can only mean one thing in San Jose - Funeral!

'Who's dead?' i asked Xicu in the supermarket.

'Pep des Puig,' he replied, 'lived up the back here, had a carpenter's workshop, was always in Can Bernat. You'd know him if you saw him.'

Saturday, 11 December 2010

The Two Sides of a One Sided Match

Everybody sees things from a different perspective, especially if it's something they're really passionate about. Not with me yet? Don't worry, here's the perfect illustration using 'The Greatest Game,' Rugby.

Here's a Wigan fan's view of a cup match against Saints

And here is a Saint's fan's view of the same tie

Almost identical aren't they?

Rock, Tapas, Beer and Photos

I went out to San Jose's Beer, Rock and Tapas fest on Wednesday armed only with two hands to investigate if it was possible to drink beer, eat tapas, and photograph rockers all at the same time.

 As this blurry shot of the Good Ol' Blues Mafia Boys shows, the answer was a resounding NO. Nevertheless I'll be going along again today to try to establish conclusive proof of my findings

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Palma Photos Slideshow

Here, they are, some of my photos from my trip to Palma de Mallorca last week.

Friday, 26 November 2010

Something Fishy in Palma Aquarium

Fins ain't what they should be down at Palma Aquarium. I was lucky enough just to get there on bath night for the jellyfish. It's a good thing it's only once a month like everyone else here as they put the poor little things in a giant washing machine.

Feeling a bit peckish, I noticed that the restaurant had some canap├ęs by Anton Mosimann

which were delicious, though I just had enough room for some raspberry jelly!

I wish I hadn't offered to help feed the sharks as I really did put my big foot in it.

And as usual, there's a just for fun quiz. What did the aquarium staff say to me when the shark coughed up my shoe?

Sunday, 21 November 2010

The Zoo Project, Ibiza.

The sound of hammer on tile yesterday morning reminded me of last year's Ibiza Winter Pool competition when two of our neighbours slugged it out to find the most inept builders for major works on their swimming pools.

Neighbour number 2, where yesterday's work was taking place, obviously succeeded as almost a year to the day, they are still frigging around there.

Neighbour number 1 struck the jackpot. His workers finished only 3 months behind their two month schedule meaning that their client only lost about ten grand of rental income having to cancel reservations made by people to holiday in his house.

Now, his new project is constructing a 'parque infantil' - a children's amusement area with swings, slides etc and a mini zoo with chickens, rabbits and goats (which can all be eaten when he gets fed up of having a zoo in his garden)

And guess who he's got doing the construction work? Yep, the swimming pool mob! When you find a bunch of workers as efficient as them in Ibiza, you keep them sweet!

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Viva Servicio al Cliente

Only in client friendly Ibiza could you find a sign as helpful as this.

It's in the office window of a boat repair and maintenance company in San Antonio port and says that they've sailed into the sunset until March and are now in Valencia. Valencia is a 5 hour journey by once weekly ferry and a mere 14 hours (don't ask me why, maybe it's uphill) back.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Frosty Glasses

You know when film directors have to clever up some blonde bimbo for a role that requires a small spark of intelligence - a secretary say - they always use glasses as a prop to signify intelligence and sophistication.

It works! Here I am with glasses in Sa Capella

I look just like Mariella Frostrup!

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Credit Crunch

Have you ever noticed that when you just spent 20 minutes crunching numbers into your phone's keypad giving every conceivable detail about your credit card, the first thing the real person that you eventually get to talk to asks is, "what's your credit card number?" 

What's that all about?

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Art in Rome

Blog-o-philes may already know that my record with works of art isn't that good. Every time I step into a gallery it's the day when they're changing all the exhibitions and all there is to be seen are blank walls or workmen scratching their heads.

So it was with some confidence (you can see where this one's going) that Jaki and I set off for the Santa Maria del Popolo church in Rome where Caravaggio's upside down crucifixion of St. Peter has been hanging in the Cerasi Chapel since 1600.

It had been taken down for restoration and was propped up, upside down against a wall under the glare of glaring arc lights. So just our luck, but we did get to see Caravaggio's right way up 'Crucifixion of St Peter.'

Later we went to the Holiest of Holies, the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, HQ of the Roman Catholic Church and home to Michelangelo's ceiling featuring a central depiction of the Creation of Adam. You'd think that after 500 years it would still be there, and you'd be right, and we were absolutely gobsmacked into silence. Not by the fresco, but by the rubbish on the floor that some knobheads had left. We couldn't believe that anyone could be so thoughtless and disrespectful!

So now, every time I think of the non pristine sistine, instead of

all I remember is this

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Fashion Ibiza

Have you ever noticed that when you see a fashion model in a glossy magazine and you think 'wow, I like those shoes!!'

and then you read on and it says, Nigel Hall denim jacket (Ebay £3), Nigel Hall linen shirt (Ebay £1), Gap linen cargo trousers (Ebay £2) and shoes (model's own). What's that all about?

Friday, 1 October 2010

Do You Know the Way to San Jose

Fortunately the driver of the number 8 bus did and dropped me off in the car park just round the corner from the 'View from the (Ibiza) Villa' villa.

I had my trusty phone-vid with me during the journey and took this bus' eye view of the village from Xicu's supermarket to the car park.

 There's an observation quiz that goes with the video............. Can anybody name the two restaurants and two bars which we pass on the left during our brief journey??

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Ibiza Supermarket Sweep

What supermarket in the entire western world would put a €49 bottle on the top shelf right next to the alcy pops for 79 cents?

Why, SYP would, of course! Probably in the hope that our local shabbily dressed wino gang, the Don Simon Mob, would change their chosen tipple should they ever pay a shop lifting visit to that fine retail establishment.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

iThoughts from iBiza

Have you ever noticed that when you've just spent two hours downloading and installing the monthly new version of iTunes, you then spend two hours unsuccessfully searching for whatever is new or improved on the version you already had? What's that all about?

Dynamic Dalmatian Duo

As this blog still gets visitors from Duo Ibiza, our local dog sanctuary, checking up on Floyd's progress, I thought I'd post a short video of both Floyd (first on screen) and Marli. 

Monday, 6 September 2010

Zoom Ibiza

Don't feel inadequate if your phone video doesn't have a 10 x digital zoom option. Just get a bit closer to your subject.

See how fast I can run now?

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Emergency August: Ibiza

Ibiza in August is a nightmare; hot and crowded.

I only ever step out of the door for emergencies and my petrol consumption for the month, a tank and a quarter, and the number of photos I've taken, 25, proves this.

Here's photographic evidence of a Red Cross 1.7 km round trip I made for emergency supplies.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

DIY Ibiza

How cool can DIY get?

Fita, a big DIY store in Ibiza town has had local graffiti artist Jerom spray a mural over the entire facade. Here it is, and to give it scale I've left a bit of my car in.

That's just soooooooooooooo Ibiza. (As is them not having what I drove all the way down there to buy)

Monday, 23 August 2010

In a Bar in San Jose, Ibiza

What could be better than a cold beer, some olives and boquerones in lemon juice and olive oil while you're waiting for your Saturday night tapas?

No? Well I'll tell you. A nice chunk of country bread to mop up that oil would have done the trick!


Don't you just love it when after you've watched just half of the best programme on telly for months- Al Murray's The Pub Landlord – and left the other half sitting on your sky+ drive for future amusement, your secretary comes along and deletes it?

What's that all about?

Monday, 2 August 2010

Real Life Ibiza Comedy

I just got back from SYP (don't ask) with a bag of Papas Vicent and said, 'wanna crisp Jaki?' and she said, 'no.'

So what's funny about that?

This is, the most sublime 15 seconds of comedy ever.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Great Clattering Trams, it's Soller!

Looking through my phone video collection this morning I came across one I took on the tram that runs from the Port of Soller to the Town of Soller and back.

This shot is as you enter the main square of Soller which as you can see is packed with bars, cafes and restaurants all with pavement terraces.

Anyone thinking of visiting who may think that the noise of trams clattering back and forth every few minutes would disturb a relaxing lineside drink should have no such worries. The noise of the tram is completely drowned out by hundreds of bloody kids playing on skateboards in the square!

Saturday, 31 July 2010

Palma Hilton

or I married an heiress.

As I alluded in my last blog, Jaki inherited some money, and whilst she's not in the Paris Hilton bracket, she did give me 500 quid to spend on anything I wanted.

Being the man who has everything he needs and wants for nothing I decided to forego buying trend monkey treasures - anything beginning with i and suffixed with pod, pad or phone, and instead book a holiday.

Paseo at El Molinar heading to Ciudad Jardin

So I'm off to Palma again! Booked into the Urban Sea Portofino where I stayed in March, for the low, low price of €32 a night - that's a beer and two Martinis in the Teatro Pereyra, Ibiza. The flight cost €48 (less than 5 beers in you know where) so I reckon I've got about €450 to spend on Fosh Food, Wineing tasting, and my long promised gastro-alcoholic tour of BoHo barrio Santa Catalina, and of course Jazz Voyeur club where a beer will set me back a mere €3, less than a third the price of that other place I went to in Ibiza the other night.

Jazz Voyeur, check it out, check it out, check it out now, come on!

Friday, 30 July 2010

A Night in Ibiza

No, you're not gonna believe this but Jaki and I stepped out on the town the other night and celebrated her 'coming into some money' when an elderly and previously unknown relative died in Australia, by going into 'spin city' for a bite to eat and a few bevvies.
A short but nevertheless scenic taxi ride (€21) brought us to the throbbing metropolis and having a few minutes to spare before our table at La Plaza was given to someone else I snapped a few scenes of the ambience in Dalt Vila's Plaza de Vila.

We'd calculated that it was 20 years since we last dined in La Plaza, drawn in by the elegant wine glasses and place settings and we'd often noted that it was one of the few rezzies in the square that hadn't succumbed to packing punters in cheek by jowl to maximise profit during the short season. I can't think of anything worse – other than being serenaded by an unwanted accordionist – during dinner than having to hold your elbows in and listen to a total stranger's conversation.

Our meal was superb, scallops, duck breast and duck liver, sea bream, beef Bourguignon, two fab desserts, a couple of aperitifs and a bottle of Marques de Riscal from the Rueda region came to €106 and was worth every mouthful. Nice unobtrusive but efficient service and a pleasure to spend time there.

OK, so when in Ibiza town, you have to comply with the laws of tourism by gawping at the posh yachts in the harbour, oohing and aaahing about what the owners are watching on their giant screen tellies (like you do when you're a billionaire on holiday in Ibiza, watch the frigging telly.)

So here's the obligatory photo of a mega yacht with a humorous name.

Then we walked up to the port to see the trendy bars that every dance music mag says you must go in. Obviously not many folk read Mixmag these days as trend monkey fave Base Bar had not a soul in it. And then doubled back along 'Mother of God Street,' (Ibiza Gay HQ) where, they'd obviously forgotten they were glad to be gay judging by some of the miserable faces perched on bar stools.

Still, the upside of gayness, unlimited sex whenever and wherever you want it, is more than matched by having to listen to Hazell Dean records, sing songs from the shows and take your mam out shopping.

So, two down and up comes number three – people watching. This means that your terrace table is surrounded by a stream of awkward looking tourists scared shitless of being ripped off and wondering where to go. It's about as interesting as watching Escape to the Country.

A quick headcount at our Mar y Sol table in the time it took to quaff a G&T and Cuba Libre (€12) revealed that no less than 5,876 tufty haired skinny youths wearing vests and penguin style shorts (waist round the crotch, crotch round the knees) passed by. Either that or the same gang of 5 did the circular route about a 1000 times. Ditto, the 342 skinny, brown, high-heeled, saggy French women.

Anyroad there was some light relief when a gaggle of geishas gathered to promote a Brazilian night at an Ibiza disco (like you do) who were wearing very little under their kimonos!

Even better was the promotion for Pure Platinum our local (non gay) gentlemen's club – here's a video. For some reason girl number 3 seemed to attract my attention.

Penultimate one on the list is getting absolutely shafted in a place you'll never ever visit again in your whole life. Fortunately for the Teatro Pereyra, there's more than just me in the world and millions of mugs just waiting to hand over their hard earned readies.

Tom Worrall was on keyboards and voice, and we got about 15 minutes of him for our €21 (yes TWENTY ONE FREAKING EUROS) beer and Martini. It's amazing how quickly you can sober up innit?

Last law of tourism in Ibiza is waiting for a taxi. We were quite quick on this and sped home through the hot night air (€23) and got back just in time to go to the toilet before bedtime!

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Ibiza Races: Chips v Tapas

To celebrate the return of my shift key we decided to have chips made in the JML wonder oven for tea. To liven up the proceedings I decided to carry out one of those pointless experiments American boffins are prone to do.

It was this - If I put the chips in the oven for 20 minutes, have I got time to get to Es Galliner, buy my tapas, have a beer, get back and heat them in the microwave so that everything's ready at the same time.

Here's the phonecam photolog

T minus 20: The McCains are in

T minus 16: Tapas in Es Galliner

T minus 14: A cold, frosty beer

T minus 11: Tapas packed, beer drunk

T minus 2: Get the wine opened

T minus 1: Floyd has a drink

T plus 1: Voila! Crispy chips, meatballs in sauce, chicken curry, and spicy chicken wings in the microwave


Tuesday, 20 July 2010

power ibiza

after a series of power cuts last friday in the early hours ranging from a nano second to 20 minutes - they all screw up my sky plus box - the powers that be decided to do something.

luckily they gave us a few hours notice that our leccy was going to be cut off most of this morning and we managed to get our breakfast in first, just before the power went off from 5 past toast to 10 to tea and biscuits.

it somehow seems to have affected my keyboard which no longer has a left hand shift key so no higher case letters for now.

Friday, 16 July 2010

Nowt to do with Ibiza

Years ago in the late 70's young Jaki used to go dancing round her handbag in Pips, behind the cathedral in Manchester and she's just joined a facebook group for everyone who did likewise.

Here's a photo of some of her contemporaries

No idea who they are.

Anyway, another popular and similar club at that time was Placemate 7 which ocupied the same building as the legendary Twisted Wheel, one of the best Soul clubs ever, and where my brother-in-law Peter Lyon as a young parka clad mod used to go on a scooter.

Sky Arts are currently screening Tony Palmer's history of modern music, All You Need is Love, made in 1977. On the strength of it he was asked to direct a documentary for Granada's This England programme about another Soul club, Wigan Casino.

One of the tracks featured in it is a cracker, The MVPs - Turning my Hearbeat Up.

It's featured (from 1' 30") in this clip of Quadrophenia with a lot of parka clad mods on scooters


Fab, innit?

Like You Do:Ibiza

You know how we suffix tales of everyday stupidity with the expression 'like you do?'

Well, here's a phone snap from my 'photos from a bar' series

It's a life or death sprint across San Jose's busiest road against a constant stream of traffic, 10 metres from a zebra crossing, on a blind bend AND wearing frigging flip-flops - like you do! 

Maybe he was running for the bus and pretending not to?

Friday, 9 July 2010

Ibiza Irony II

As I'm just popping out to the pasteleria (cake, bread, coffee shop) for ice I'm reminded of an incident a couple of weeks ago.

As usual the road and pavements were blocked by lazy gets who don't want to park more than 10 metres from their destination.

A bit like this, but much worse. The Guardia Civil, finding their path blocked, jumped out of the car and delivered a lecture along these lines
"There's a big car park down there and it doesn't cost a cent to walk a few metres, now clear off before i fine you all"

The irony is - though nobody pointed it out to the gunslinging jack-booted one during the bollocking - is that every pasteleria in Ibiza has a zebra crossing leading to it and, as often as not, there's a Guardia Squad car parked on it while the lads stock up on doughnuts! 

Ibiza Irony

I went to the SPA today. The information on the Roman Bath door told me that it was hot with 50% humidity inside.

The irony is that our bedroom is hot with 76% humidity inside

It'll be in the high 90's in August!

Third World Cup

Remember my observational post about the flags of different nations - the misleadingly titled Embassy Club?

Well watching the World Cup has led me to believe that there's a connection between the National Anthem of a country and its position in the league of nations.

ie the lower the list you are, the greater the speed of your national anthem.

Compare the dirge-like God Save the Queen to the Uruguayan anthem

Interestingly there seemed to be a connection between the way the teams played after the anthem. Uruguay and Chile were like a swarm of cartoon bees alll over the pitch whereas England appeared like a herd of grazing cows after God saving the Queen.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Trastevere Travel

Ha! You thought I was going to call this post 'Roman Holiday' - well I wouldn't stoop so low as to mention or use anything from that film in my blog.

I've been doing a bit of research and found that we will be inundated by strolling street accordian players, red and white checked table cloths, gigantic pepper grinders and dodgy-accented waiters with a flamboyant way of placing a napkin on a lady's lap.

Better still, our apartment is just down the street from Rome's home of the Blues, the Big Mama club.

Anyroad, I've already started boning up on the lingo and realised that my schoolboy Latin - here's an example I knew like the back of my hand for 'O' level

"Nisus was guardian of the gate,

No bolder heart in war’s debate,
The son of Hyrtacus, whom Ide
Sent, with his quiver at his side,
From hunting beasts in mountain brake
To follow in Aeneas’ wake:
With him Euryalus, fair boy;
None fairer donned the arms of Troy;
His tender cheek as yet unshorn
And blossoming with youth new-born."

Isn't going to do me any good when I'm looking for the bus stop from central Rome to Vermicelli airport (the one Ryanair fly from)

So I'm using this video to get me into the hang of local customs

And finally, as I harboured boyhood dreams of owning a Lambretta SX125, I thought that when in Rome, I'd do as the Romans do, by scooting around on a scooter with Jaki riding side saddle, so here's an image I've Photoshopped up to illustrate what we may look like.

And here's the quiz. What am I saying to Jaki?

Saturday, 3 July 2010

The Big L

Jaki is the Big L this year, so I thought I'd take her to somewhere where they understand Roman numerals, the Eternal City, Wome!

Courtesy of Ryanair direct flights from Ibiza to Wome pwetend airport, the one you've never heard of, we'll be downing espwesso after espwesso at about €20 a pop at all the major tourist sights.

We're based in this funky pad overlooking the Tiber in BoHo barrio Trastevere.

So, on my command, unleash hell!

As usual, there's a quiz for all old people who may read this......

How old is Jaki this year in Arabic numerals?

Thursday, 1 July 2010

The Great Big SYP Ibiza Tuna Quiz

Well, are you smarter than a ten year old? Here's the knotty problem I was faced with at SYP today which concerns economies of scale, bulk buying and super fast mental arithmetic.

I needed some tinned tuna for use in tuna, sweetcorn and mayo sandwiches. The two options placed tantalisingly on the shelf were
Buy a pack of 3 tins for €1.16
Buy a pack of 6 tins for €2.47

What would you do?

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

More Parking Ibiza Style

OK, OK! I've had so may requests for more examples of Ibiza Motoring Mores that I filched a couple of snaps from today's and yesterday's Diario de Ibiza

Parking Ibiza Style

Why bother shunting back and forth to get into a tiny gap when you can leave your motor like this?

It's so much easier!

Friday, 18 June 2010

Does Size Really Matter?

Of course it does, and wouldn't it be great if clothes manufacturers realised this. Months of purchasing (without trying on) clothes from Ebay has made me realise that even though my measurements never change I'm four different sizes. Large in Gap, XL in Nigel Hall, XXL in Scotch and Soda, and XXXXXL in Yohji Yamamoto.

I bought 4 items, all size XL from all the above and put them all together, can you spot the difference?

If, by some remote chance, my father is reading this, they're FIG LEAVES, the world's first item of apparel

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Catalonian Connections Competition

What's the connection between this Jazz bar that I photographed in Catalonia about 4 years ago

and these lolipops which were first made in Catalonia??

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

World Cup Wake Up

Spain never had a chance against the Swiss. How those lads can be expected to play properly when the first hour of the match was right in the middle of siesta time I'll never know.

Still, it was mercifully quiet in the village.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Phone Photos Ibiza

A series of unconnected stream of consciousness photos whose only connection is that they were taken using my phonecam and they're all in Ibiza

Dabs and Carioca (a member of the hake family) in SYP

Botox lady from Living TV's Ibiza series in Xicu's

No. 2 Street in San Jose

Two old ladies wearing silly hats at the market in San Jose

A selection of fruity beer in Lidl

Isn't life ordinary in Ibiza?