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Wednesday, March 20, 2019 5 comments

Midweek moments: Restoration & Change


I didn't see the theme until I put my 12 favorites in a folder and said, well now, would you look at that...

I was on a bit of a mission, but when I turned the corner and saw this...

...Wow, a bullring right in the heart of the city. I knew there was one, but...

...didn't know where it was, until now!

Stores across the way watch as the renovation work continues...

...on the 143-year-old building

No idea re. the background of this group, but they were having fun!! 

Yeah, about that appointment next week...

One man's restoration project is another man's parking place!

Pffft... Who needs a dryer?

This picture won't make any travel guides, but it represents :)

How did they even do this?? (You may need to zoom in, I did :)

And, how the world is changing...

Monday, March 18, 2019 9 comments

Monday Musings: A Roundabout way of Saying Goodbye


I was in town the other day and traffic at the main roundabout was more snarled up than normal, but when I walked a bit further, I understood why.

A hearse had moved slowly up one of the hilly arteries, and was entering the roundabout. I noticed, with a little shock, the simple, wooden coffin lay not in the vehicle, but on the shoulders of loved ones or friends behind the hearse. Shock soon turned to a poignant awe as traffic came immediately to a standstill -- as did all conversations as the coffin passed several bars and bystanders -- on the way to the cemetery on the other side of the roundabout.

The coffin had six able persons carrying it on its final journey, with many pallbearers feeling the comfort of a spare hand on their free shoulder and it was such a beautiful, but private moment surrounded by dozens, if not hundreds of people that I didn't lift my phone to capture something I'll never forget.

We all have to go, and I've been blessed that I've not had to walk behind a funeral cortege for more than 40 years, but when I go, there are definitely worse ways to take that final journey.
Wednesday, March 13, 2019 5 comments

Midweek Moments: Random. Life.


I was all over the place this week, and will share some musings on Monday, but for now, here's part of what made me go "wow" this week:

Can't get enough of  how homes are numbered. It's confusing, but oh so awesome.

Artsy-fartsy view of the (dirty!) balustrade next to the sea.

The chuch in the square next to the famous "Balcon de Europa."

Told you. It even has its own puzzle pieces (Only one should be missing!)

I get it now. Yeah, it's an ok view. I suppose.

Land is too scarce, too expensive, or too wet, so they build up.

Simple, but so different...


So nice to see someone there to care at the end of a day and life...

...And still, elsewhere and everywhere, life goes on...

...Paella will be made (Who needs hairnets, USDA regs -- or kitchens!) I LOVE this place :)

And, may you be filled with hope and love at the dawn of each and every day.

Monday, March 11, 2019 6 comments

Monday Musings - RIP Joanna Toole


I woke up yesterday morning, worried about the ongoing little things that are causing so much stress in my life right now.

Then I heard about the Ethiopian Airlines plane crash that happened at about the same time I sat outside enjoying a coffee.

There were 157 people onboard, with no survivors reported, and the plane that went down was a new Boeing 737 Max-8; a plane I've flown in more than a dozens times in the last 18 months.

People from more than 30 nations, including Ireland, died on the flight from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to Nairobi, Kenya. One of the passengers was Joanna Toole, 36, from Exmouth in the U.K., according to the BBC news story.

Ms. Toole. who worked for the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization, was travelling to the UN Environment Assembly, when the plane went down only six minutes into its flight.

Her father, Adrian Toole, told Devon Live she was a "very soft and loving person" and had worked for international animal welfare organizations for the last 15 years.

"Everybody was very proud of her and the work she did, we're still in a state of shock," he said. "Joanna was genuinely one of those people who you never heard a bad word about."

There are 156 more stories are out there from people who lived in Ethiopia, Canada, Kenya, Italy, France, Slovakia, Germany and more...

Puts one's petty problems in stark perspective... Hug a loved one today (and everyday) and tell them you love them.
Wednesday, March 6, 2019 7 comments

Midweek Moments: "Carnaval!"


When I looked up, I felt like treasure and then had to follow the line to see what was going on, only to discover it was -- totally unknown to me -- local "Carnaval" time :)

Well now, don't I feel special!

Must. Follow. The. Contrail. (Miss you, Art Bell...)

OK. The road is blocked. Cops are there. It's a parade!

So hoping the Walking W.C. has a body cam...

LOL, (That's all I had when the door swung open!)

However, I felt bad for this poor man, What a crap job.

Love the old man on the left who remains a little cautious :)

Meanwhile, bureaucracy doesn't stop not even for some stinkin' aliens

"Yeah, we'll be there soon. Jeff is signing in now. Save us some humans, er, I mean tapas."

It's not all fun and games at Carnaval.

Different countries have different cultural ways of doing things.

Would love to know the story to this!

Some familiar characters walk on while one Cpt. America takes a moment to chat!

Monday, March 4, 2019 7 comments

Monday Musings - Kids playing. On the Street!


Last week, I was out on the balcony hanging up some clothes (dryers are muy uncommon) when a strange noise caught my attention.

It was dusk, about 7 p.m. and holy crap, there were actual, real-life kids laughing and playing below in the community playground. It was such a nice sound to hear, and something I haven't heard for donkey's years. Searching the benches I couldn't tell (curse you, becoming-old eyes) if there was a parent present, but if there was, there weren't many. And yet, the kids were having a blast being kids, like a lot of us glass-wearing folks remember our childhood.

A couple of days later, I walked by the front of my apartment building and there were more of them, and like Gremlins they were! Boys and girls of +/- elementary age, hanging out and playing some sort of hide-and-seek game -- again with no visible adult supervision. Another smile hit me. I hadn't seen kids playing that in ages, and they were having a blast, so I watched for a few minutes from my vantage point about 50 feet above. I thought about yelling in my best Spanglish, "Se esta escondiendo theeerrrrreeeeee!!" but knew that wouldn't go down well with the hide-ee.

Yesterday, I worked near the town center, and three boys, with no bother or guilt, happily played football between facing apartment entrances. They used two sets of trees about 20 yards apart as goals, so it obviously wasn't the first game of the season. The lads played their game, interrupting (a lot) as people wandered onto and off the "pitch." Again, not one parent leaning on a tree or on their phone whilst "keeping an eye" on them.

And then I realized, no one specifically needed to watch them because the community was doing its own thing in its own way.

At my apartment building, I'm sure random people looked down at the kids playing and they did stay within the community grounds, which are abundantly huge. The soccer-playing boys were next to two cafes filled with people and they would get such a bollicking if they -- or the ball -- strayed too far.

My point is I love it over here, partially because of the "it takes a village" mentality that is so normal and built-in, so hooray for a country that lets its kids be kids and where family is still such a community thing.

(My boys are scheduled to come over in June-July for a month. They have nooooooo idea of the culture shock they're going to experience.)

Hee hee :)
Wednesday, February 27, 2019 6 comments

Midweek Moments


Midweek moments always make me smile, except when I frown 'cos I've missed posting one:)

So, here's some random pics from this week (and one from last week.)

I heard a motorbike sounding thing behind me, looked and saw this!

*Somebody* loves baseball over here. PTL :)

Countdown to Semana Santa (Took this 13 days ago :)

In this bar, when you ask for a glass of wine, you *get* a glass of wine!!

... and now I know why :)

Opening day for our new office was this Monday!

Bloody hell, birds... Can't *one* of you guys *please* fly "in" the sun. #NoMoneyShot

An apartment, a cafe, a palm tree and a sea. What more do you need?

Seagull landing on a skinny Martian? Anyone?

Shadows of a demo job well done.

Obviously, all new IKEA-built chairs must first be test-driven/pushed :) 

This old lady is awesome; taking care of these communal plants in a public alley.

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