Saturday, September 19, 2009

Red Arrows over Gibraltar - 2009

The Red Arrows flew into Gibraltar yesterday to put on a display this morning for the first time in years.

For once, my timing went well. Breakfast eaten, showered, and nicely ready to wander out and catch the 10.30 bus to Europa Point.

At the bus stop the traffic was stationary/moving very slowly. One woman said to her daughter, perhaps you had better go, or you might miss it. The daughter shot off at a fast pace pushing the kiddy in a chair. I followed her - but when I got to Trafalgar Cemetary, the traffic was clear.

I had visions of shooting around Rosia, Camp Bay and Little Bay, and entering the tunnel to get to Europa just as the Red Arrows flew past. I decided to go back and wait for the bus, I figured it would arrive on time.

A few minutes later it turned up. Full. Damn, damn, damn. I was going to have to walk anyway. 10.37 now.

I started legging it up the hill. As I passed the next bus stop, the same bus I had been waiting for arrived, still full. At least ten people immediately started the trudge uphill behind me. Onwards and upwards, past the Rock Hotel, past the cable car, focusing on getting to the old naval hospital before 11am - after that it's all downhill.

And although it's a hillier route, it's actually shorter than going around Rosia. Well, I think it is anyway. And maybe an empty bus would arrive for me to jump on - but it didn't.

At spot-on 1100 I was approaching the corner to descend to Europa and the Red Arrows zoomed into sight in perfect formation (it looked perfect to me). Red, white and blue smoke in perfect lines behind them.

I felt a slight shiver and a huge thrill of anticipation at seeing such incredible skill and precision. At this point, pedestrians were winning out, the traffic had ground to a halt and people were marooned in cars as those of us on foot gaily marched on to find a good viewing spot.

Nothing more to say really. Just brilliant and awe-inspiring.

Links to Red Arrows site (and Wiki) after the photos.

And the traffic was still horrific all the way back. I thought Gib might have tipped into the sea this morning, Europa Point end first - it felt like the whole of Gibraltar was going there. But worth it.

Red Arrows
Wiki summary

Thursday, September 10, 2009

National Day Gibraltar - 2009

Of course we missed the political rally in Casemates, the boring speech in the Piazza and the release of the balloons.

The balloons must have disappeared very fast as we left home at 1pm but not a single one was in the sky.

Wandered down the Piazza where everyone was happily partying on.

'Want to dance?' asked Partner.

'Yes great,' I said happily and set off into the square. Horrified look. 'I'm not going down there.' Oh well, nice idea for a few seconds.

Off down Main Street, people, dog and child spotting looking for interesting red and white combinations.

More music outside the Venture.

Next up, Ocean Village to see if there was anything happening there. A new bar, Ipanema was absolutely lleno, and Champions Planets was pretty busy too.

Status Quo are apparently playing down there tonight - somewhere.

But in the afternoon, right now, there is music from Kings Bastion, and a group performing at Town Range (£3 entry fee - not really necessary when I can hear it very loud and very clear in the flat for free).

Oh and the dog - like the rest of us - decided to get into the spirit of things, even if he is a Spanish campo dog.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Finca fotos

Life on the finca means cycling along by the sea. And stopping to look at the boats.

In fact it is quite easy to spend too long looking at the boats. Fish too. There is no fishing allowed in the harbour and there are always loads of shoals of fish. Should that be fishes?

Looking the part? Maybe not He has the helmet, the gloves and the bike, but couldn't be bothered to put on the sporty ropa.

Of course, it's not all fun and pleasure. Even yet more painting.

At least the front is nearly done now.

Finishing touches.

Admiring the clear night sky (and the very splendid finca over the road).

Relaxing after another hard day's work.

And back on the road again.