News, opinion, essays and links for residents and friends of Mojácar, Almería.
This site, started in September 2002, is called The Entertainer Online to continue The Entertainer name, the name of a weekly newspaper started by me in 1985 which ran without interruption throughout southern Spain until 1999 when a three year option to buy was taken by staffers. They never concluded the deal, or paid me, but changed the name when the option expired in April 2002 instead. Que vamos a hacer.
Overview of this site (Sections at bottom of page)
*Rambeau’s Diary – a blog *Freebie-Jeebies® – Some relaxed comment on the local free-press *Fallout – quotes from other sites *National News Certain pieces that catch my fancy *Local News Certain pieces that catch my fancy *Essays: Various input *Links about Spain (see top of page) about 200 useful links, including my other blog Spanish Shilling - *Now ten years old (Dec 2015). *To e-mail me - write to email@example.com. I don't always answer or open attachments.
Digging up a dying variegated agave (planted by my mother about 40 years ago), infected with the 'agave snout weevil' - the latest plague to hit Almería, I found both these beetles and their fat grubs, but also (surprise!) several picudo rojo weevils inside the wreckage - the big red palm weevil! What a mess.
The ecologists can't seem to get things together. While the local ones are said to be enthusiasticly releasing the agave snout weevil, which feasts on agave (its grub is the 'worm' found in a good bottle of tequila) into the area, convinced that the agave is an invasive plant that needs to be eradicated, the Murcian ecologists have taken it a stage further, telling people to only plant local flora in their gardens as they struggle to uproot all invasive plant species... But, back in Almería, 'agricultural engineers’ are campaigning to cure and replace the lost chumbo cactus in the province. Meanwhile, the only solution appears to have either a rock-garden, or maybe one of those Japanese things, with sand and a pebble...
Albox appears to have had a lot of mayors recently (councillors changing sides and so on). the current one has hit the national newspapers this week after he ordered footballs being used by the children in public plazas to be confiscated. Presumably intended as a comic tweet, the mayor (from a local political party of one) says '"Friends, I just started a campaign to collect balls, this one (in a photograph of a ball in the police station) was seen in the Plaza de San Francisco and was arrested by the local police, I have given order now that by the end of the month we have to arrest 10 balls. Parents, the plazas are not for kicking balls around. Un saludo ". Everyone - for some reason - has got excited about this...
Later: By chance I met the mayor on Thursday 21st October (the British ambassador was presenting an MBE to Maura Hillen, president of the AUAN, an event which required my presence). I teased the mayor about his new-found fame and he mournfully told me that 'they've even been ringing up from Argentina about it'.
To show the ‘passion’ of the anti-taurinos towards their point of view, at least in some extreme cases, there’s a story of a child dying from a sarcoma who wants to be a bullfighter (just for one day). The bullfighting world has taken him to their heart and is collecting funds to help research the disease, while the child is taken to a bullring and schooled gently... Some of the ‘antis’ are calling for the child’s death on the Internet and now they naturally are being sued by the family and the Fundación Toro de Lidia. El Mundo is appalled. The always absurd animalist political party (sic) Pacma fudges the issue and tells a journalist that 'they are always against all forms of insult and violence'.
For those of us who don't read the Daily Mail, the Express or the Weenie, it seems that the UK is rather in a mess. Whether the pound going down the Wazzoo, or the rise in hate crimes, or the remarkably artless ideas of the Government regarding foreigners, it's clear that we Britons who live in Europe will be given a rough ride in the future as the Europeans react (with lesser or greater reason) to what they read in their own newspapers about the British behavior. Take Guerra Eterna, for example, with 'The United Fucking Kingdom' here, or the by now daily criticism of the UK from El Mundo (Sunday's item: 'The British Government bans foreign experts as advisors'). El Huff Post has this story: 'The UK will oblige companies to list all foreign workers'. You can imagine the comments from the lumpen that follow below. My own thought on this in Spanish for Facebook: Mi temor es que el actual racismo institucional británico se extenderá (como una forma de venganza, o de retribución) a España. Hay muchos españoles en el Reino Unido, y muchos británicos en España. Ahora es cuando necesitamos políticos inteligentes - no demagogos.
Well, if 'Tourist Day' (below) was a bit of a bust, at least we had 'The Day of the Prettiest Pueblos in Spain' today (lucky it wasn't held tomorrow Monday when the Plaza Nueva mirador is demolished). Then, he added breathlessly, there's the very un-cosmopolitan Fiesta of Nuestra Señora del Rosario at the Mojácar Fuente (yes, bunting and flamenco outfits and the inevitable ribbon races) coming up on Friday the 7th (a mass) and Sunday the 9th (ribbon race at 7.30pm at the fuente). Meanwhile, a number of the (non-tourist) towns of the interior of Almería have met to sign an agreement to look out for the British residents (following the Brexit debacle) as far as they can. Poor things, they don't have tourism to keep them in roses. The report is at Spanish Shillinghere.
For the International Day of the Tourist, next Tuesday September 27th, twenty bars in Almería are giving an extra tapa with the first drink. This, according to the hospitality association, is to remind people of the importance of gastronomy to the tourist business. Not much, maybe, but a nice gesture. I wonder what plans the Town Hall of Mojácar has to celebrate this day, which is, I'm told, 'the only industry we have here'.
Fruit of some words on Facebook, I've called a meeting with Jessica Simpson and others to discuss care for the elderly - I suppose I mean principally the foreign residents here - and the alternatives. Some experts in the field will be along. We will also explore the idea of a 'residencia' for Mojácar. It's at 10.00am Tuesday 20th at the Dani Café in El Palmeral (just down and opposite from the Continental hotel).
From this week's edition of Business over Tapas: The area is around 500 hectares, an agricultural region with a number of cortijos and farms: producing oranges, grapefruit, olives, aubergine and lettuce. But the ministry has spoken – without this area, a pedanía from Cuevas del Almanzora in Almería, to be expropriated for a tortoise reserve, there will be no AVE high speed train roaring through the tortoises’ normal habitat nearby. Among other faults here, one is the idea that tortoises move around in herbivorous herds – easy for youthful ecologist volunteers to catch. They don’t. They’ll be lucky to find any. La Opinión de Almería has the sorry tale here. The AUAN association says: ‘Oh honestly and for goodness sake. The authorities want to expropriate the homes of 200 families to create a tortoise sanctuary in Cuevas del Almanzora as part of the project to create the AVE high speed train link. Sign the petition to ask the government to think again. The little blighters will be just as happy somewhere else surely?’. There’s a petition here.
A good day to take it easy. The weather channel says it's hitting 37% here in Mojácar today Monday, with a break for tomorrow down to something rather more bearable. I drove into Almería yesterday in the old car (no air-con, no fan - window wide open) and it was 37% all the way there on the temp gauge. Still, after today, the weather will be fine now I think.