Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Material Witnesses Required

The Red Lion is in it's last 2 days of Barry & Tinas' tenure and there is plenty of activity going on in order to successfully move themselves before the imminent end of the month.

There are plans afoot at the sierracazorla website to put up a permanent tribute page and to add a Red Lion section to the photo gallery using photos sent in prior the the Closing Party on the 30th September last (we had over 1000!!!).

Sounds very easy, and it is but we need help. If you have known the RL or B & T and would like a chance to contribute then, please send in your own tributes/reminisensces via the comments link below for inclusion on the page. And please, sign with your name and location so that due acknowledgment can be given.


Thursday, 25 October 2007

Another update.

Ann's test have revealed an enlarged heart so things are slightly more serious than first thought and to put it lightly, David is somewhat worried. More than this I cannot say because a) I don't know and b) not my place.

I went for a meal with David tonight, just to keep him company and Larisa "cropped up". I vented some feelings about the relationship which I mentioned to you on the phone the other day and he said that she had said that she was proud to be my friend (or something similar) that day when we dined at La Salamanca with Katy and the Red Heart thingy remember?.........sooooo, following on from our telephone chat..................

Larisa's visit to Madrid is ending. I've had a txt tonight (long after David and I parted company) from "near Granada" that she is on her way home with Jesus driving and if they are quick enough we can eat together tonight. I think that Jesus has taken control here because in the next breath she sent that they are going straight to Fuengirola. I replied that that is a sensible idea bearing in mind that it is 23:30 and they are only as far as Granada. No way do I want to go eating upon her arrival here in Malaga at God knows what hour of the morning. She says that she'll call me tomorrow and I've reminded her to make it early before I go to work. My despondancy earlier in the week has gone out the window, she's coming home. And I can't sleep. look at the time!!

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

A relapse

It is a thoroughly miserable day today, persistant rain since the early morning and just 15C/59F as I write at 1pm. Tomorrows forecast is for much of the same including a thunderstorm or two.

David took Ann back into hospital on Monday afternoon after she woke up from a nap with breathing difficulties. She has been kept in while tests are performed to find out what is wrong and it hasn't helped that she was only given one weeks supply of antibiotics when it should have been two.

Ann & Bill have announced their Wedding Date. Feb 19th in Gibralter. I was invited to Dinner with them last night and I was pleased to accept; going straight there from work. Actually I received a second invitation to do "chinese" with David and Liam and his wife. All being present in the bar at the time, Ann gave me the right to choose which invitation to accept, but it was easy to decide on a "first come, first served basis" and Ann's chicken roast was absolutely delicious.

At the moment the 5 - 9 shift of mine in the bar is going quite well. I have had consistently good days all this week and I have not long since heard that today I will be well patronized as well because Beryl's husband Randy arrived from the States yesterday for a 3 month stay and there are celebrations occurring which kick-off in the bar with 'pre-dinner drinks'.

I must remember to turn the coffee machine on when I open up. An Italian lady has promised to drop by again for another cuppa. Hilda tried my coffee on my first day 3 weeks ago and said it was awful (too strong) so I've not been looking forward to making anymore for anyone else but yesterday I got caught good and proper. She said it was good and would come back today. Can't be bad, return customers are the best sort.

Saturday, 13 October 2007

Different Routine....cont'd

I think it was about 12:30 before we saw the light of day on Sunday morning. Declining my offer of a cup of tea (but then nicking half of the one that I made for myself) she invited me out to lunch, and after I'd cleared up last nights washing up etc (don't forget that I had to rush everything to get to Fuengirola ontime) we went out and up the steps into Town. El Lanjarón was very busy but we managed to get a table and sat down to a nice meal. After killing time around the town centre I left her at the bus-stop at 4pm and made my way back home to get ready for work.

Monday evening David came into the bar....Ann had been taken into Hospital early that morning (3am or so) and diagnosed with Pnuemonia. She was still there and was expected to be for a few days. After work I accompanied him to a local chinese because he didn't feel like cooking for himself and then back to the bar (with Crystal) for a snifter, although Cystal didn't give me much peace until I'd taken her for a walk round the block. She knows that I will always do that and I know that she enjoys the walk because she gets away with "Blue Murder" doing things and going places that David does not normally allow her to. Crafty.

Tuesday saw the same scenario with David at a loose end although this time we used a different Chinese where I didn't enjoy the meal so much.

Wednesday was the other Ann's (Ann S) birthday and she was throwing a party in the Chinese Restaurant that David and I used on Monday evening. A party in the form of a Chinese Banquet. I was invited. She and some of her friends came into the bar to meet and left just before 9. I followed a few minutes later still in my working togs (I didn't have time to go home and change and anyway the trousers, clean shirt and the waistcoat I wear at work were good enough). Back to the bar after for a late drink, then home to bed.

Ann's friends Cherry and Harsha were here from the UK and they invited me to dinner at Cuemvi's on Thursday but I had to decline because I'd already prepared a meal for myself to eat at home after work. But I did agree to go back to the bar to have a drink with them (they are leaving on Saturday Morning). David also called by to let me know that Ann had been sent home by the hospital and he had a quick drink while waiting for his takeaway chicken order to complete at one of the local eateries. Cherry asked if I would be in the bar Friday evening (last night) for a final goodbye drink and again I agreed to go back after going home for my dinner and changing.

Doesn't sound like it in these notes but, yes, it has been quite hectic of late.

Right now, Saturday Morning, 11am, I'm going to cook some bubble n squeak (cos I did extra veg yesterday specifically) and a couple of eggs then have a potter round the apartment making sure everything is OK......just in case. Always be ready Mr Derek Field, always be ready.

Friday, 12 October 2007

Different Routine

Today is a National Holiday and the whole of Spain is closed (except the bars, restaurants and other essential services!) Day Trippers may affect such businesses locally this afternoon and evening, here's hoping.

The job has turned my day upside down and I don't think that I am used to the change in routine yet. Last night I slept like a log until 10am this morning, didn't hear a thing. I was so tired that I gave up on last nights blog session and went to bed so this carries on from where I left off. So why has it been so hectic? It all started last Saturday at half-eight while I was in the bar working.........

"If you want to go dancing come here to Fuengirola at midnight".
"OK, I'll be at the Bus station at Midnight. Right now I am working in a bar". Told her! She now knows that I have a job. This is the first opportunity that I have had to let her know and one that I have been waiting for. And that knowledge immediately prompted:
"I think that the last bus is at 11pm, I'll wait by The Salamanca restaurant, let me know when you are on the way". Ah, I didn't tell her what hours I was working, now she's digging and maybe worrying that I won't actually be able to make it.
"OK, I'll call you when I'm on the way and I'll meet you at La Salamanca". Then a couple of hours or so later, at the railway station after having checked the timetable, I sent "I am going to catch the 22-55 train so I'll be at La Salamanca by about 23-30".

"Where's that white shirt?"
"Which white shirt?"
"The one we bought last year in Springfield's along with those trousers" (which I was wearing).
"In the wash. Your message to meet you caught me by surprise and I wasn't ready"
"Always be ready Mr Derek Field, always be ready".
Soooo... that white shirt and those white trousers are now reserved in the wardrobe so that I will always be ready! What I should have remembered is that that day when I was taken to meet Jesus (Haysoos) it was that outfit that she chose from my closet and ironed for me while I showered. She obviously likes me in it.

"So, how are you, well?"
"Yes. I've been taking tablets and they give me a headache so I have stopped taking them".
"Tablets for what?" As it turned out she has a problem involving haemaglobin and the tablets she has been prescribed have a side effect (headaches). So now I know part of the story about what is wrong with her, I still don't know why she has to have an operation in a few weeks time, if indeed she does, maybe I've mis-understood although I don't think that's the case - we've talked about when (November).

In one of the discoteques that we went to (she prefers a place that is more-or-less empty, less noise, more room) we bumped into 2 girlfriends of hers (Ukranians) and she asked if I would mind if we joined them to which I replied of course not, so we did. I've met many of Lary's friends here in Torre, Benalmádena and Fuengirola but not these two so I was subjected to some hard scrutiny after the introduction and some "out the corner of the mouth" comments were passed. All must have gone well because Lary soon suggested that we all go somewhere else (this place was packed, I'd asked to go there but it was too busy for her. Luckily, meeting her friends was, for her, an unexpected bonus). Here I'll mention that on the way in on the train I'd noticed a Feria (Fair) just outside Fuengirola towards Los Boliches and upon meeting with Lary I had asked why it was there. The Annual Fair. We caught a Taxi away from the Disco and with Lary in the front giving the driver directions we headed off towards Los Boliches. Oh-Oh. After a tortuous drive through the one-way sytems in Los Boliches we ended up back down near the front and another disco. Empty(ish). 2am. Lary's happy, she'll stay here I think. She did and settled into conversation with her friends. Bearing in mind that they were speaking together in their own language which I do not understand I was aware that Lary was getting quite excited with what she was saying. And then she suddenly switched to Spanish and a door got flung open: she was telling them about the day that she and Katy met Austen!! She did it a second time as well, switched to Spanish so that I would understand the conversation. This time about how I managed to hold my own at Malaga fair on the white knuckle rides!! So it seems that our time together pleases her just as much as it pleases me so why-oh-why is it once in every couple of weeks and then (normally) just for a couple of hours. Mind boggling. Actually this meeting will turn out to defy that convention but 'I dont know that yet' so to speak. Alone on the dance floor she engaged me in a "smooch" to every slow track that was played which, in front of her friends, I found quite reasssuring. She's happy. Many girls would rather die than be 'first on the floor' but not Lary. Luckily for me it doesn't bother me either, in fact I quite enjoy being the exhibitionist and I certainly enjoy the fact that I am dancing with her whatever the circumstance. 4am and we decide to leave. Walking along the paseo we take our leave of her friends who carry on towards Fuengirola and home while we turn away from the sea and head towards a luminescence that I can see in the sky.

"Vamos a donde?" I asked.
"La feria" she replied
"Oh no, no la feria" I responded.
Slipping an arm through mine and coming in close to my side - "Mr Derek, sabes que tu disfrutas las ferias" (a serious reference to our conversation around my infamous SMS to her the morning after the trip to Malaga fair) and taking my hand in hers she proceeded to make sure that I didn't go anywhere but in the right direction! But in that instant I wasn't caring anything about the fair. We were holding hands (she'd taken mine). We are back at square one. Square one being almost 3 years ago, a little while after this very same young lady came into my bar one Saturday afternoon and, after watching me potter for a while, simply asked "como se llama?" (what is your name) which led to that first date when we left the bar after I'd closed and walked through the garden holding hands on the way to the Marina and the discos. This time though things are a little different and I don't think that you need me to explain.

The fair was in the process of closing, not many rides were open and some of the bar tents were shut but we had a couple of rides and a few drinks and enjoyed ourselves, always holding hands while walking between here and there etc.

"I'll walk you back to your apartment then catch the first bus back to Torre". (Yes, it's 6am by now, first bus is 7am).
"I'm going to change and then I'll come to Torre with you"
"You want to come back with me?" (Gulp!)
"Yes. Don't you want me to?"
"Of course I want you to"

She took a nap on my shoulder during the bus ride back here and we stood and watched the sun rise as we walked down the San Miguel steps at 8am. "Help me change the bed for you". "It's OK, I'll be fine here on the Sofa, you use your bed, just give me a blanket". When I got back to her a few seconds later with one she was sound asleep!!

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Hectic is the word

OK, I give in. I know that it is not "tomorrow morning", it's actually an evening 4 days on from that promise, but here I am, not long in from work, my meal is being reheated and then I'm back out until a little later. Told you it is hectic. Actually I have had to decline dinner out with friends this evening due to the fact that I've already prepared mine for a quick feed tonight here at home (it is chilli). The meat sauce is being reheated (in the frypan covered by the plate to be used to serve) over a pan of boiling rice which means that I am doing my bit in the fight against global warming and I get to dish a hot meal onto a hot plate with no curly edges "a la microwave", just like Mum used to do. Ah, see? Even I think of these things although it is more to do with the fact that I don't like lugging gas cylinders up the ancient staircase that separates me from the outside world. Nuf sed.

Now that is going into my recipe list. One man and his chilli con carne, or, have frypan....can cook, or, just me..full belly...no waste. Recipe? What recipe? I can't remember what I did now, so I'll checkout the wastebin to find out what's in there and, working backwards, write it up in My Kitchen later.

Fabio (the owner) is watching the trade level carefuly at the Bar where I work. Folk are going to have to realize that, having asked him to open up in the afternoon, they should support his positive response more. Yesterday none of them came in. He's asking me about my Social Security status etc. so I feel that the little job that I have is safe (due to other upcoming issues) but it wouldn't surprise me if he eventually gives up on what may be proving to be a lost cause although the other day he mooted the idea with me about a "happy hour", and last week he mentioned a dartboard. On the other hand he likes the music too loud and some of his prices are perceived as high. But then everyone knew those things already.

......I'll be back..........

Sunday, 7 October 2007

An Early Night

Yes, I'm having an early night. Why tell? Because usually I'd be blogging here now at full speed because there is a lot to tell. In the meantime, to those that are wondering....things (and I do mean everything) are just hunky-dory but the last 24hours have been very exhausting and I just have to sleep now. I'll be back (in the morning).

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Party Debrief

Yet another thunderstorm and heavy rain last night for an hour or so. This one was very close and in fact there were two simultaneous flashes and bangs, extremely bright and extremely loud, indicating a lightning discharge overhead. More storms are forecast today but at the moment it's quite nice and rain and thunder do not appear to be on the agenda.

El Bar de Ana (Ana's Bar) has decided to open at 5pm to take advantage of the displaced trade caused by the closure of The Red Lion and I have the job of bartending until 9pm each day. Fabio is testing the market so to speak. If it works, all well and good. If it doesn't he'll not think twice about giving the idea up. The local community have brought some pressure to bear on him to do it so it is up to them to make sure they make it worth his while from a business point of view.

The Red Lion appears all set for the sale of fixtures and fittings etc. tomorrow and Friday. Ideally I think that Barry would like to leave the place as a bare shell. Through the windows I can see tables and chairs stacked in lots, boxes of glasses and lots of other stuff ready and waiting for potential buyers when the door opens for the "Bar Sale" tomorrow morning. I must remember to go and claim the full gas bottle I have said that I want!

As for the party and the webcam. The interest in the cam was enormous. I doubled the bandwidth quota for the month and all was used by close of play on Sunday. In fact my Website Hosts allowed just a little extra according to the emails I received about exceeding limits. There were nearly 800 hits during the 7 hours the cam was live and 1gb of data was transferred during the same period. Reports from around the world indicate that the cam worked quite well and for that I have to give credit to Hioxindia.com, my hosts.