Breakfast Thoughts

They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and that variety is the spice of life so I thought I would do a post about my breakfast experience this week! We do our big shop (once a month) in Mercadona for the general foodstuffs and then in Iceland for the unique-to-UK stuff. Did you know that you can’t get bath foam for love nor money in Spain?!

Bacon for Breakfast

During the visit to Iceland last weekend, I came across the twin pack of bacon that you see pictured above (hopefully). Now as my iPhone doesn’t take great photos in low light, coupled with the fact that I’ve not got a steady hand, you can’t see very clearly what it says on the red section under the ‘20% extra’ bit. Believe me, it says “For cooking instructions see back of pack“. That leads to my question: who the heck doesn’t know how to cook bacon? I’ve known how to cook it since I was about 8 and not even allowed near the frying pan: so it was always the grill at that age! Any thoughts? Would anybody really need to read the instructions? The bacon was OK lathered with the obligatory HP sauce but nothing to write home about.

Choccy Cornflakes for breakfast

My second purchase (made in Mercadona) was this packet of Kellogg’s Chocolate Cornflakes (only ‘the original & the best’ for me). I couldn’t quite picture the two together but in the interests of culinary investigation, I paid a small fortune for this 375g packet and to my surprise found that they are rather tasty. Not too sickly and not plastered in chocolate. My only suggestion for improvement is that they team up with Cadbury’s and use their Dairy Milk chocolate to cover the cornflakes with instead of the generic stuff they’re currently using.

That’s all folks. Toodle pip!

Yolanda & El Mosquito

(English Translation below) Aquí hay un post, en realidad de mi amiga Yolanda Rueda. Ha hecho un post en su página de Facebook que me parecía tan graciosa y única que quería compartirlo con mis seguidores también. Es su “carta” al mosquito que le estaba molestando.

Yoli & el mosquito

Carta al mosquito

Querido mosquito porculero:

Te agradezco que quieras acompañarme en esta CÁLIDA noche de verano, pero estoy cansada de levantarme con las piernas llenas de arañazos de tanto rascarme. No logro entender ese empeño de tu familia y tuyo por dejarme las piernas hechas un cuadro. ¿Qué pasa? ¿No hay más gente en Málaga? ¿Tenéis que picarme todos a mí?

Te agradecería eternamente que abandonases mi cuarto y me dejases dormir solita. Con el calor que tengo, el timbre de voz de los muchachos de los bancos de enfrente y el resonar de los ronquidos de mi padre me siento bastante acompañada, de verdad.

No es necesario que me susurres al oído. Preferiría que hablásemos mañana por la mañana que seguro que entre cliente y cliente tengo un hueco para ti.

Atentamente,
Una que te recordará con amor cuando suene el despertador mañana por la mañana.

(ENGLISH TRANSLATION)

The other day my friend Yolanda Rueda made a post on Facebook about her annoying experience with a mosquito during the night. I found it so funny and clever that I wanted to share it with you all.

 Letter To The Mosquito

Dear pain-in-the-butt mosquito:

I appreciate you wanting to join me on this WARM summer night, but I’m tired of getting up with my legs full of scratches due to them itching so much and me having to scratch them. I do not understand this obsession that you & your family have for leaving my legs in a state. What’s up with you? Are there not any more people in Málaga? Do you all have bite just me?

I would be eternally grateful if you would leave my room and leave me to sleep alone. With me suffering from the heat, the sound of the lads’ voices sat outside on the benches and the echo of my father’s snoring, I feel quite well accompanied as it is thanks.

I do not need you whispering in my ear. I would prefer it if we could talk tomorrow morning as I’m sure that I could fit you in between my clients.

Sincerely,
One who will fondly think of you when the alarm goes off tomorrow morning.

The Art Of Spanish Guitar

Jorge & Lorenzo plus guitarYesterday I attended a friend’s wedding in Fuengirola and at the reception we were treated to several guitar and song performances by two local artists: Lorenzo Ruíz and Jorge. I have had the pleasure of seeing Jorge sing and play guitar before with my friend and ex-workmate Enrique. It amazes me how he manages to play seemingly without any effort at all but then that’s due to his experience and natural talent. What surprised me is how humble he is and during his breaks from playing, he mixed with the rest of us dancing and chatting. The same can be said of Lorenzo, who I just met for the first time yesterday.

Guitar, Rumba & Music Box – What A Combo!

Lorenzo took the lead in singing and sat atop the music box, a very popular instrument here in Andalucía, whilst Jorge astounded us with his dexterity on the guitar. Below are two videos recorded live from the event, that will hopefully give you a taste of what we enjoyed. They were recorded with an iPhone 4 so the quality is not great (as a side point, I’m slowly being converted over to the Dark Side in favour of a Samsung Galaxy S4 if anyone has one that they want to give away)!

Tápame

Tápame Lyrics:

(Chorus) Tápame con tus manos…que tengo frío…
Porque ya no me dices cariño mío
Y acurruca mi cuerpo entre tus brazos
Y déjame que crea… que estoy soñando. (Bis).

No quiero que se pierda nuestro cariño
Y si no te apetece no estés conmigo
Siento que el amor nuestro se está enfriando
Y a solas me pregunto, ¿Qué está pasando?

(Chorus)

No sé por qué motivo me has olvidado
Ni quien en tu camino se te ha cruzado
Por que cuando te hablo estas ausente
Dime si me queda algo por ofrecerte.

(Chorus)

La vida que me queda yo te la ofrezco
Por si salvar pudiera este amor nuestro
Pero no me traiciones con tus mentiras
Que el amor verdadero no se mendiga.

(Chorus)

Pot Pourri of Spanish Rumbas

Yolanda’s Star Trek Uniform

When Star Trek Becomes Reality!

Imagine my surprise today at work when my work colleague Yolanda is there sat at her desk, mobile in hand, dressed in what I can only describe as a Star Trek: Next Generation officer’s uniform. Both Yolanda & Kelly have very modern dress sense but today, Yolanda shot to number one in my opinion. Sporting a gold and black two-tone dress, it resembles the command colours from the TV series “Star Trek: The Next Generation”.

After taking a photo (what Star Trek fan wouldn’t?) just so I could show my friends, I decided to put my limited Photoshop skills to use and show a ‘before & after’ picture. I’m quite pleased with the result but decide for yourselves.

Yolanda - Star TrekThanks again to Yolanda for her unending patience with me and my photography & Star Trek obsessions! As always, comments are welcome. The original photo is shown below so that you can compare the two. Just click on it to see full size.

Yolanda in Star Trek Dress

Curriculum de un gitano andalú

Aquí va un post en español, especialmente para vosotros quienes están quejándose que no escribo mucho en el español jeje. Hace tiempo alguien me envió este curriculum de mentira y me hacía tanta gracia que no podía olvidarlo. Así que, ya que hemos avanzado en el mundo de tecnología, os dejo dicho curriculum vitae (o CV como suelen decir en inglés). Por supuesto, está hecho con buen humor y su propósito no es insultar ni degradar. Un beso grande del ‘Gitano Blanco’.

CURRICULUM BITE

curriculum foto yo 1988

Foto real al 12 de junio del 1998

JOSE MARIA HEREDIA VARGAS

EDAD: 31 AÑOS
ESTADO CIVIL: CASADO 3 VECES
SITIO DE NACIMIENTO: BADAJÓ
TIPO DE SANGRE: ROJA NORMAL SIN SIDA
OJOS: UN POCO VERDES Y ESPRESIVOS
CABELLO: A LA MODA
COMPLECCION: ATLETICA O TIRANDOLE A CACHAS
ESTADO DE SALUD: UN POCO RESACOSO PERO BIEN GRACIAS A DIOS
DOMISILIO: BARRIADA DEL ALAMBRE. LA CASA CON LA PUERTA AZUL AL LAO DEL BAR JOSETE
TELEFONO: 9520000 ES DE DOÑA CONCHA ME DEJA RECAO. ES MI VECINA.
ESTUDIOS: SI QUE ESTUDIE, SE LE JURO SEÑORITO

OTROS ESTUDIOS:

  • CURSO A V ANZADO DE PLASTILINA
  • COMO HASERSE UN PORRO CON UNA SOLA MANO
  • PRIMEROS AUSILIOS EN LA CRUZ BERDE
  • GUITARRA FASIL DEL CCC

ESPERIENCIA LABORAL EN TRABAJOS:

  • TRABAJE EN EL CIRCO RINGLIN DANDOLE DE COMER A LOS MONOS
  • LOS FINES DE SEMANA ME TOCA LAVAR LA COCINA ENTERA EN DONDE EL PROYECTO HOMBRE
  • UNA VES ME CONTRTARON UNOS SEÑORES PARA PARTIRLE LA BOCA A JORGE LEIVA PERO NO PUDE PORQUE ME PERDI
  • PARTICIPE EN UN PROYECTO DE IRRADIACION GAMMA CON COBALTO 60 EN EL INSTITUTO NACIONAL DE INVESTIGACION NUCLEAR DE GUADALHORCE PERO DESDE ENTONCES ME DAN ATAQUES EPILEPTICOS
  • TRABAJE EN EL CARREFUL LLEVANDO CARROS DE LOS SEÑORITOS

AFICIONES Y JOVIS:

  • SOY DEL MADRI DE CORASON
  • ME GUSTA IR AL MERCADILLO LOS DOMINGOS CON LA CHONI A VER A LOS COLEGAS, BUENA GENTE
  • COLECCIONO CUENTOS DE ESPIDERMAN (EL OMBRE ARAÑA POR SI NO SABEN INGLES)
  • LOS FINES DE SEMANA DE BOTELLON EN LA PUERTA DEL BURRI KING CON TODA LA BANDA DE COLEGUITAS, BUENA GENTE

BUSCO CURRE DE:

  • POR LO MENOS DIRECTOR GENERAL DE EMPRESA INTERNACIONAL
  • SE FIRMAR DOCUMENTOS IMPORTANTES
  • MANDAR A LA SEÑORA QUE LIMPIA A UN CAFELITO
  • CALMAR BRONCAS
  • SE MANEJAR COCHE, MOTO, BICI Y PATINETE
  • MODELO  PROFECIONAL
  • MATON DE ALGUNA ARTISTA COMO EN LA PELICULA DEL GUARDAESPALDAS
  • AMANTE PROFECIONAL DE VIEJITAS SEX SIMBOL
  • DE LOS QUE DICEN LO QUE HAY QUE HACER

POR FABOR NESESITO TRABAJO DE LO CONTRARIO TENDRE QUE BOLVERME DELINCUENTE Y NO VA CON MI IMAGEN.

GRACIAS.

Yolanda In Summer

I have a good friend at work called Yolanda who is the latest addition to our small family team at Ideal Country Property. She is one of those fortunate people to be loved by the camera. I came across this photo the other day on her desktop and instantly fell in love with it. I’m already in awe of Yolanda’s amazing & luxurious hair but in this photo it is accentuated and the whole shot has a lovely summer feel to it. In fact, it’s like something you’d see on one of the old Sunsilk Shampoo UK adverts from the 80s. What do you think?

Spring & Yoli
Click photo to see full size.

The photo was taken by the artist MISA MEDINA.

Publicidad Personalizada – Personalised Adverts

Aparentemente en el mundo moderno en lo cual vivimos, existe una cosa llamada “publicidad personalizada”. Consiste en mostrarte publicidad relacionada con lo que estás viendo actualmente. Eso dicho, quiero saber ¿qué tiene que ver el trailer de la nueva peli de Star Trek con 3 restaurantes de lujo de Barcelona y Madrid? ¡Algo falla en alguna parte! je je.

Star Trek Trailer & Adverts Screenshot

Apparently in this modern world in which we live, there’s a thing called “personalised advertising”. Basically it means that you are shown adverts relating to what you are actually looking at. That said, I would love to know what the new Star Trek film has to do with 3 swanky restaurants in Madrid & Barcelona. Something is not working somewhere! ha ha

Speaker Problems at the Corte Inglés

Ever had speaker problems? I’ll get to that. First, I’d like to say: “Hello world…again!” My last two Blogs were hacked & ruined by scum-of-the-earth-with-nothing-better-to-do but eventually I will be putting my showcase of photos on here, taken on my “travels”. I will be sharing my insights on the world & life in general so basically, if you’re reading this, you’re either a friend or just incredibly bored; in either case you have my sympathies!

Here’s me kicking off my new Blog with a true story from late last year and with a photo of a Guinness I recently enjoyed during my lunchbreak across the road from my work.

Guinness Break

Only in Spain: Christopher’s epic true story of the day (18th November 2012 – MADRID)

Speaker Problems Even At High-End Stores

Went into El Corte Inglés (Spain’s equivalent of Harrods) this evening and headed straight for the electronics dept (nowt new there then). I spot a thing called “Sonos Wireless Speaker System” (wireless as in no wires and not as in the radio). There are two smallish trendy speakers separated by an information card with instructions as to how to use it on your mobile device. I download the App and follow the on-screen instructions to connect my iPhone to the Sonos Wireless Speaker system. With me so far? Now comes the tricky part. First of all I get a screen with music files that are not mine – they belong to the store’s music server. OK I suppose but I wanted to rest the speakers with my own (80s decent) music. I press play aaaand… nothing! OK so I press the volume buttons on both speakers and still nothing. I’m pretty impressed at this point…NOT! Then I see a volume slider button on my phone and put it up to maximum. I hear a faint sound of music but nothing outstanding – certainly not worth the price tag on those speakers.

speaker sonos wireless systemOK so I’ll select another track, one that’s a bit more upbeat and I press play again. Still nothing so I start messing with the settings and moving the volume slider (sort of like what you do with the mouse when you want your PC to go faster!). Whilst I’m doing this, some idiot at the other end of the store starts playing some music that keeps starting and stopping and really distracting me, further adding to my frustration of not being able to manage a supposedly simple technological task.

Then one of the young, snobbish, underpaid, overworked staff, dressed in a suit and with an ego the size of the entire 9 floors of the store comes over screaming and shouting at me, flaring his arms. I’ve of course, got my “what the heck is this guy’s problem?” face on, which apparently didn’t help his mood. Treating me like a 3-year old, he proceeds to tell me that he and his important clients can’t hear a thing as I’ve got the music on full blast over in his section where the speakers are and would I turn it off NOW!

Turning my gaze to the other side of the store (a good 30 second walk away) I see quite a few people with fingers in there ears, staff scrambling around the audio section trying to turn all the speakers off amidst miffed customers hurrying away from the racket! After my initial embarrassment and feeling bad for those customers whose hearing I may personally have permanently damaged, albeit unwittingly due to 5 minutes of intermittent dance music, I then realise that after all I AM still a customer and as such, I have rights (and one of them isn’t being spoken to like a dog).

As it happens, three chief executives walk onto the shop floor (probably wondering what all the commotion is) and I make a beeline for them. I ask them to follow me to this amazing little Wireless speaker stand in the electronic section. When they point out that I need to speak to a member of sales staff, I mention that it is precisely due to the conduct of one of their elite staff that I am making a complaint that has to do with this marvellous new piece of technology. Suddenly, they come to attention (bad customer service in El Corte Inglés? Never!) and quickly follow me to the stand where I point out the current setup. (Remember the two speakers and info card?)

Coming To America SaulAsking them to put themselves in my position I asked them which speakers one would expect to control remotely from one’s phone? All three pointed to the ones in front of us. I then emitted the “ah-haaa” of Saul, the Jewish client in the barber shop in the film “Coming To America” when he tells joke about asking the waiter to taste the soup (if you don’t know it just ask; I will be happy to oblige). I then take out my phone, turn on my newly downloaded App, select the crappy modern dance track from their server and put the volume on max. “Not very loud, is it?” says one of them to which I reply, “that’s because it’s coming from the other end of the store, right from where your employee is running toward us over there!” At this point I stop the music (as I don’t want to cause any more collateral damage) and mention that he is the employee that treated me like a dog and told me off.

cartoon-man-runningHalfway through his jog, the twit sees the three suits with me, does an impressive turn mid-run and darts behind an isle of DVDs. At this point I ask the three execs to read the instructions on the info card in front of us and then ask them if it is by any chance normal or logical to have two speakers in front of you that have nothing to do with the system but rather have a server that controls speakers at the other end of the store. Also, did such a situation want my being treated in such a deplorable manner by an employee if such a reputable company? Oh and by the way, I am now not going to buy the speaker system nor the 4.000€ 65″ TV from them!

This bit I loved: the three of them couldn’t apologise enough but I wasn’t having any of it. Shouting over to my wife in a very formal manner (she saw everything too) I said “Come on dear, we’re leaving!” in my best spoken posh Spanish accent, then walked briskly off round a corner where we watched the three suits give the snobby twit the telling-off of his career!

Moral of the story? I’ve no idea other than don’t buy a Sonos Wireless System as it’s crap – unless you want to control your neighbours speakers down the road!