Week 51 of Gibraltar Diary

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Sunday 1st March February 2009

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There are lots of pretty girls dressed as sailors and police operatives and it is all extremely good natured and cheerful. Eventually we wander home and get to bed at about 3.00am

The next day we are up bright and early and climb the Rock - this time we do the Mediterranean Steps in 13min 30secs without really trying so we feel annoyingly virtuous and smug. On the way up there are various flowers blooming and interesting ships - including the
Royal Fleet Auxilliary RFA Mounts Bay and the remains of Fedra, which is currently being dismantled, having run aground here last October.

Monday 2nd March 2009

There are still an awful lot of ships in the bay not doing very much - including the Celestine River which hangs around here like a teenager on a street corner.

Having said that, we are not exactly hives of industry. We take a trip to the border to sort out a car problem and then get the Number 10 bus back to our door. I just love sitting upstairs at the front and since we are first on the bus we do just that.

The FTSE100 closes at 3625 which is over 5% down on the day. Later in the evening Wall Street is down a similar amount - things do not look good.

Tuesday 3rd March 2009

In the morning we finally dismantle our Christmas Tree which has given us such good service over all these months.

In the afternoon my girlfriend spots a flyer in a shop window for a Craft Club that meets this very evening. I want to watch Miss Marple on the TV but we set off anyway. To quite where we are not sure but it is evidently next to a bar and we have a street name. Eventually we give up and stop at the police station and a charming lady gives us directions to The Royal Gibraltar Police Social Club. After a few laps we find it. The bar, it turns out, is down the corridor, not next door but drinks are unbelievably cheap and the ladies there are very charming.

We chat about crafts and this and that and my girlfriend produces some gloves she is knitting to great admiration - they have fingers which is pretty cool. No thumbs but Rome was not built in a day.

I promise to produce a map and then we go home having met some nice people.

Wednesday 4th March 2009

Gibraltar is on the edge of both the Atlantic and the Mediterranean and sometimes the weather cannot make up it's mind how to behave. Today, however, it is in no doubt - it is freezing cold and blowing a gale.

We dash over the road to the Timeout Cafe for a meal and then finish off with something sweet and stodgy.

Thursday 5th March 2009

For years I have been lecturing people on how overwatering is the main cause of indoor plants dying - the leaves turn brown and people then add yet more water in a vicious circle and the plant dies. Most plants can survive happily with no water for weeks on end. Having said that our poinsettia has been traumatised by our two weeks away (most of the leaves fell off) and it is looking very sorry for itself.

We are also feeling a bit sorry for ourselves as the weather is still very cold and windy.

Friday 6th March 2009

In the morning it is very sunny and the police go for a nice chug around the bay - well, you would, wouldn't you.

Later it clouds over and we might as well have been in Manchester as the Mediterraean. We walk into town to see a woman who fails to turn up. Normally I would ring her office but it is not that simple - my mobile phone is on Orange and when in Gibraltar it calls via Gibtel, Amena or Movistar (no "e"). In the location we have agreed to meet I can only pick up Gibtel so I cannot make phone calls. So, I send a couple of text messages (which Gibtel will send and receive) but she does not reply. Later I find she has totally forgotten, which makes me feel a lot better as I do that quite frequently and it is nice to know I am not the only one.

In the evening we watch Overboard with Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell - made 22 years ago. It is not great art but very funny and we go to bed laughing.

Saturday 7th March 2009

My girlfriend has decided that she really loves black pudding and so we eat two giant breakfasts in the Square Cafe and do a bacon for black pudding swap. Actually the cafe is not square it is sort of rectangular - it is called the Square Cafe because it is in Casemates Square.

Later we go to a birthday party in La Linea.

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