Friday, 20 January 2017

On the m.v. Cap Finistère in January

Were you on the m.v. Cap Finistère in January?

Did you see me sketching you?

If you did, see me sketching you...

....why the devil didn't you sit still?

It's not easy drawing people when they keep moving about.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

The English and Greeks do it on Brittany Ferries.

But not the French and Spanish?

The Brittany Ferries vessel m.v. Cap Finistere which plies between France, Spain and England took us to Bilbao and brought us back from Santander. On board ship all the announcements and all the notices are in the three languages of the passengers: French, Spanish and English.

Except for this one in the toilet.

Is it only the Greeks and English who block the toilets or is it that the French and Spanish don't ever use the toilets?

Monday, 16 January 2017

Garbled at the Garbatella

I have just had to pop over to Spain to do some research for a book to be published later this year. Whilst in Portugalete we dined with friends at the Garbatella restaurant situated on the promenade near the Puente Colgante – the transporter bridge.
The restaurant was good, the food excellent, the menu, entertaining.
Amongst the dishes on offer were:
Tepid salad to roller of goat
Squids in ink to the fine fifth
Ecological eggs to Iberian acorn ham
Crispy canneloni of Iberian trotters.
We ordered pizzas.

Friday, 6 January 2017

Passport Portraits of Yesteryear no. 24

Continuing the series of passport portraits from my collection.
Peruse and wonder.
In 1939, Emma Benisset de Villares is a 39 year old Spanish housewife living in Argentina but her surname indicates her origin for she is only Spanish by marriage having been born a Frenchwoman in Cannes.
Probably aware of the rising tension in Europe and perhaps wanting to see her family, she obtains a passport from the Spanish consulate in Buenos Aires and from the French consul a visa which, ironically given her birth and new nationality, prohibits her from working in France and forbids any passage into Spain.
She arrives in Cannes on 3 February 1939 and has to show a certificate of good conduct to the Argentine consul in Paris before being allowed to return. She leaves Cannes on 24 March and arrives in Buenos Aires on 7 April.

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

More silly addresses

See my blog post of 19 December. I have just been looking for the 'United Kingdom' in a list of possible addresses on a Spanish website. Amongst the  countries I was offered were:
Old & Bearded
The Saviour

Now, I don't speak Spanish and this list was translated from that language into English. I could guess that 'Old & Bearded' might be Antigua and Barbuda and that 'Pomegranate' might be Grenada and could 'Meeting' be the Reunion? But as for the rest, I am open to any explanations you Spanish speakers might wish to forward.
Many thanks in advance.

Monday, 2 January 2017

Christmas at Leicester City

The Christmas Tree standing outside the King Power Stadium in Leicester.

The beheaded oaks of Bradgate Park

The 'beheaded' oak trees in Bradgate Park.
We revisited Leicester a few days ago and went for a stroll in Bradgate Park. The manor house, of which only ruins now remain, was the family home of Lady Jane Grey, known as the 'Nine Days Queen' on account of having reigned for just that period before her half sister, * Mary (later Queen of the Scots) deposed her and had her executed in the Tower of London on 12 February 1554. Mary was a Catholic and Jane was a Protestant and the two religions were striving for power at that time. * see below for correction

The popular story is that after Jane's execution all the oak trees in Bradgate Park were beheaded in sympathy and indeed one can see that they have been pollarded. Whether this was in mourning for Jane or in the cause of good forestry I dare not surmise but it is understood that an oak tree will live for another couple of centuries if it is pollarded.

I will leave you to decide on the worth of the story whilst you peruse these fantastically distorted ancient trees.