Friday, 30 April 2010

Ibiza Short Stories

I'm wearing shorts today for the first time since last October!
Jaki said, 'You've got two pieces of white cotton hanging from them.'
I said, 'no, they're my legs.'

I'll get my long trousers.

Monday, 26 April 2010

Ibiza's Cleanest Back Passage

I'm well on the way to have another award bestowed upon me. Ironically, after skipping through fields of beautiful wild flowers yesterday, I was up to my neck in 'bloody weeds' a couple of hours later in attempt to tidy up the track to the garage and scoop the 'cleanest back passage' award.

You can see the defoliated areas on the left and right of this photo, leaving me, after about a gallon of sweat and 12 industrial bucket loads of plant waste taken to the dump, with about the same amount of backbreaking toil still to complete.

Tip to self. Do this work in the afternoon when the sun is in front of the house and the track is in shade.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Ibiza Low Rollers

Did you know that the Spanish are at work for many more hours than the rest of Western Europe? And did you know that they're around 40% less productive than the rest of Western Europe.

So who better to ask for advice on getting a job done that 'looks OK for a bit but isn't quite as good as if you'd done it properly' than Dani's brother at the paint shop.

His advice to me was to use the pole for the roller we'd bought to paint high walls to linseed oil the decking. Tons easier than rawming about on your hands and knees with a brush, but not so penetrative.

And Voila! 10 minutes later I'd done a job that normally takes days.

And now a joke.
A man from Barcelona (where they have a normal work ethic) is in one of the big government offices in Madrid one afternoon and nobody is there bar the cleaner.
Don't they work here in the afternoon, he asks.
No, she replies, they don't work here in the morning, they just don't come here in the afternoon!

RCCE in Ibiza

It's an accounting term which means Revenue Consequences of Capital Expenditure. That is, if you buy something big, like a new house for example, you're going to have to pay the consequences in its upkeep.

So, unless you've got the income to pay for an army of gardeners, cleaners, pool maintenance and general odd job bods, you will, like us, have to do it yourself.

That's why we hardly get out into the outside world these days as all our weekends are full of painting, linseed oiling, gardening, and general tidying as we get the house ready for the summer.

I sneaked out into the back field with the dawgs this morning and took these photos of wild, spring flowers.

Ibiza Pub Quiz

Here's a fun quiz for all. I was recently in a bar in San Jose and took this photo with my new mobile phone (not only does it have a camera, but you can also listen to music on it)

The two items in the foreground give a clue to the name of the bar and the date. The question is then, what tapas did I buy for my dinner? 

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Stop Wineing

You certainly realise how unadvanced your own little world is when you arrive in the Big City. Not only does Palma have talking bilingual bendy buses, but it also has a computer controlled wine bar!

When we were in London, we paid - and I still haven't got over the shock - £7.60 for two glasses of quite ordinary wine in a quite ordinary pub. I strolled into 'Wineing' last night and couldn't believe my eyes.

You're given a credit card which you put in a machine which dispenses wine from an array of bottles. There are 3 sizes of wine, a 60 cents snifter, a €1.20 half a glass, and a €2.40 glass. When you've helped yourself to some fine reds from all over Spain and Mallorca, there are also whites and that other one, the pinky looking one.

The idea is that you sample away until you find one you really, really like and then buy a whole bottle to go with your tempura cod tapas.

If this sounds good, then it gets better because 'Wineing' is one of 11 bars in the Lonja (old town) area that are in a scheme called Viavi to promote wine and tapa consumtion by offering both for €1.50 each on the last Thursday of every month. ie today!!!!!!

I think I only missed out on two of the bars and you may spot me in more than one photo on the Viavi site

Anyway, after all that excitement, i went to the Jazz Voyeur club and saw this band

Monday, 12 April 2010

Lost in Translation

Here's an example of some Spanglish that could be misinterpretted. It's a poster for a famous Mediterrasian fusion cuisine restaurant in Ibiza - Bambuddha Grove - that I've not yet visited.

As you can see, from the fusion of languages used, it's "Open every day. Closed Monday."

A bit of a contradiction in terms, no?

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Easter Saturday: Ibiza

Years ago, when we were kids, my dad would take us round to r gran's on Easter Saturday to collect our Easter eggs. All the way there we had it drummed into us to say "fish" when the old lady asked us what we'd had for our tea on Good Friday.

There was still a bit of religious reverence about in those days you see. That reverence still survives in staunchly Roman Catholic Ibiza and none are doing more to preserve that than the 'management' at local supermarket SYP.

Here's the meat counter today,

apart from a tantalising reminder of what meat looks like in that photo of some lamb chops, totally uncontaminated by meat. I bought some cod.

The Long Good Friday: Ibiza

They have everything in Palma. I saw this phone with a screen you can touch, and it's so big you can see the time AND read the writing if you set it to super huge 26 pt font.

It's even got a camera. Handy for me on nights out when things get a bit blurry after 2 pints, I just snap away and piece it all together the next day. So I went watching the Maradonnas at Raco Verd last night, great band comprised of Claude from Destino on vocals and the lad who chefs there on lead guitar with some others.

I got a good seat by arriving way too early at 22.10 for the 22.00 start.

Ignore that clock, it's stopped.

Anyway, by 23.05 when the band strode majestically on stage, I'd had a few scoops and things got pretty blurry.

See what I mean?

Friday, 2 April 2010

Good Friday:Ibiza

It's Good Friday today. A public holiday and one of the most sacred days in the Roman Catholic calendar. The shops are shut, the Town Hall is closed, and there are religious processions taking place around the island. Being British, I'm using my precious spare time to lay waste to the garden in preparation for the summer and to rid the pool of a layer of pine pollen. I've gone about this in a relatively quiet way, using only manual labour punctuated by the odd snip, snip, snip of the clippers. Take a look at work in progress

You may just be able to hear our neighbourhood jackass with a jackhammer who is now breaking tiles on my neighbour's porch and has been since 08.00 this morning. I'm expecting him round here tomorrow at about 7.30 to knock through my bedroom wall into the guest room.

Thursday, 1 April 2010

Holy Thursday Ibiza

It's Holy Thursday today. A public holiday and one of the most sacred days in the Roman Catholic calendar. The shops are shut, the Town Hall is closed, and there are religious processions taking place around the island.

But this is Ibiza, so some jackass with a jackhammer is breaking concrete somewhere up the street.

Happy easter everybody!