If you are visiting these pages for the very first time and you are in a hurry.......... do yourself a favor and click on the 'Hymno de las Islas Canarias'... (just below) It will give you an "Insight" into the Pride, Full Heartedness and generosity of the Tinerfenians..........Merry Christmas everyone.

Thursday, 31 December 2009

A Rare New Year Blue Moon to Greet 2010

When you hear some say "Once in a Blue Moon.......... " you know what they mean:- ie Rare or Seldom, or maybe even Absurd.  After all, when was the last time you saw the Moon turn Blue?
Tonight, New Years Eve 31st December 2009, you should look, because there is going to be a 'Blue Moon'
According to Modern Folklore, a Blue Moon is the second Full Moon in a Calendar month. Usually months have only one Full Moon, but occasionally a second one sneaks in.

For the technically minded:-
Full Moons are seperated by 29.5 Days, while most months are 30 or 31 days long, so it is possible to have two full moons in the same month. This on its own is quite rare and only happens every two and a half years, on average.

BUT, FOR THE SECOND FULL MOON TO FALL ON NEW YEARS EVE IS VERY RARE !   The last time being 1990 and the phenomenon will not repeat until 2028..................

Will this herald in the beginning of  a Fabulous Year?   I hope so!     After all, isn't it always the tiny, non related things that change our futures......   Enjoy Tonight for all its Rarity..........

Monday, 28 December 2009

Superyacht "A" visits Tenerife (Beauty or Beast? ...You decide)

On the odd occasion Santa Cruz is graced with the presence of  "Special or famous" boats that are on their way to the Carribean.  A little while ago we had the Royal Clipper which is the largest 5 masted (square rigger) and luxury Cruising Ship afloat.   What a Beautiful Sight.  It attracted lots of locals who came out especially to see this wonderful ship and envy the passengers that would leave on her.

A lot of  local people also came out to see "A" but mostly for all the opposite reasons! This 400 ft  super yacht is owned by 36 year old Russian Billionaire Andrey Melnichenko. There is supposed to be some rivalry between him and Abramovich (owner of Chelsea football Club).
This yacht is some 23 foot longer than Abromovich's  "Pelorus"

It is a 200 million pound stealth ship built by the same yard
that built the "Bismark"

It's maiden voyage was to Norway to pick-up three Monet Paintings.
It has a compliment of 42 crew members, But takes only 14 Guests.
At the Aft there is a Disco with a glass bottomed Pool directly above.

For most of us standing by, it looked more like a military machine than a Luxury Private yacht. However, Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. You decide!

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Santa Cruz Christmas Market (+ Effective Marketing)

Well, the Santa Cruz Christmas fair is in full swing and strung out along the the 'Avenida' close by the Plaza.
This comes at the time that our English Christmas and Boxing Day are over....done and dusted!
But, the Spaniards are just starting their Christmas shopping and the City is gearing up for the next ten days. The Three Kings will arrive in the City on the 12th day and that is when we all get our gifts.  Yes, the shops are open all hours and lots of bargains are out there.
Now, I am partial to a packet of nice hot 'Garrapañadas'.
(these are Almonds covered in ground almonds and caramelised sugar) You really must try them ... they are hot, crispy and chewy at the same time.... oh! and ever so more...ish!
Every night market here has loads of these stalls but one caught my eye!!
He had a very discrete sign that simply said "No hay Cucarachas en Mi Garrapiñadas" (You will not find a cockroach in My Sweets)  When he realised that I had seen the sign he beckoned with his Head to another stall down the road!   So, needless to say; I bought from him as against the almost certainly innocent vendor down the road...... But I am a sucker for Clever Marketing.
By the way, he also told me that they 'know if a cockroach has been covered and found its way onto the Hotplate' because "They are the ones that try to run away"....    He had me in hysterics.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Photo Blog of Nativity Scene in Santa Cruz

Most Towns on the Island Have their own Nativity scenes (Belén) as part of the Celebrations. A Plaza in Orotava presents us with a life sized, walk around Belen, which was quite notable given the high winds we have suffered. However, I was very impressed by the model that Santa Cruz is displaying. The 10" tall mannequins are all hand made and the detail is quite staggering. (Double click on any image and it should come up Full Screen)   Thank you Santa Cruz for this tremendous labour of love and Yes, I gave generously to the Charity Box........ Well Deserved.

Monday, 14 December 2009

(A little Tip) Always accept the small, humbling gifts from Tinerfenians

I am well known for liking my food, maybe it is my body mass or maybe I always seem to end up being a very appreciative audience when confronted with "Cocina Canaria".  Home made cheeses, Local wines, Deep Sea Fish, Superb Deserts, Exotic Fruits, Wild Mushrooms and even freshly picked Snails have all ended up being devoured with gusto by 'yours truly'.
The other day, friends were just going off to get some bread and asked if I wanted some. "Por favor" was my quick response but they were gone before I could give them any money.   On their return they had several full bags and promptly handed me one of the biggest and by way of explanation; "Un regalito". 
But, this 'little' present nearly got dropped as it was a lot heavier than normal and I mean A LOT Heavier !!
Completely intrigued, I ripped open the paper to find the heaviest and biggest bread I have ever seen, complete with lattice work detailing........Gosh! 
Believe me, it was 20 inches long and 10 inches round.

When I got to cut it open I found that it was full of Ham, Olives, Raisons, nuts and melted cheeses!!!  The bread itself had a lovely yellow hue and tasted sweet like breakfast buns. The photo above shows the last uneaten half, as it got eaten in very short order between us.      Well, the diet went out the window !!!