Tuesday, 22 February 2011
Well two fridays ago i went to Cardiff for a night out with my nephew Leighton. Its a good job we have the same dry sarcastic sense of humour and music tastes as its makes for a fun night. So after a drink at home off we went in to Cardiff town centre. First stop was a bar called "Pen & Wig" used by Lawyers, Accountants and Students, i noticed most of the students were drinking rose wine, have students become refined? Do students now have some class? NO, "rose wine £5.99 a bottle" good to see students saving some study book money LOL. In here i spotted 2 guys who were in my high school class for 5 years, God i've aged well haha.
We moved on to watch an up & coming band called "The OK", well i think that was their name. This was in a welsh club called "Clwb Ifor Bach" and no the songs weren't in welsh its just what the clubs called but they do get alot of wooly backs in there. I bought a round and we took our places stood on a step close to the band in a small room that had about 100 people in it. The band started up and during the second song a drunken women decided to use me to help with her balance and spilt my glass of Smirnoff & sprite over me, to stay i was stunned and about to rip her head off with a verbal onslaught of expletives was an understatement but i bit my lip, stayed calm and just stared in a way that would make Dirty Harry shake in his boots. She apologised over and over and offering drinks, i just stayed quiet staring then i smiled and said "its ok don't worry", What? i must be going soft in my old age, at least get a free drink, IDIOT! The band were ok but nothing i haven't heard before from a young indie band, they played all their own songs but on leaving not one song stuck in my head so thats not a good sign, my nephews band were much better in their day but being an actor starring in Torchwood his acting career came first, also drugs, drink, women and concert riots in the end broke up the band, What? oh yes, sorry, thats Guns N Roses, my mistake LOL.
We moved on to a bar called "The Old Library" it was Rock and Indie night in here which is what music we like. It was pretty quiet to start off with but that was ok as somebodies uncle was in there to entertain us. He was sort of like the drunk 50+ uncle that turns up at wedding and after a couple of Stella's ends up taking up the whole dancefloor due to his elaborate dance moves and of course his drunken legs not keeping him in one place. At one point i thought he was breakdancing but he had actually fallen on his ass after headbanging to Led Zepplin. Had quite a few in there and had a dance while taking the mickey out of the others on the dance floor and pretending to be Morrisey from The Smiths when "This Charming Man" came on, always the best part of the night.
Time was moving on and we decided to move on to watch some more live music but the band had finished and there was a cue, i do not do cues especially in the UK in January, way to bloody cold to be stood outside haha. We headed towards a bar near the taxi rank called "Lloyds", boy was that a big mistake. The people in there made the party clothes worn by the gypsies on "My big fat gypsy wedding" look very classy and stylish. I would say most of them in there should have been tucked up in bed with a bedtime story they were that young. Guys walking like they'd pooped in their jeans just to keep them from falling down. Nice sight seeing a guys ass hanging out with his under crackers showing, don't want to see a snotty kids skid marks thank you very much, thats why they're called "underpants" DOH! The girls weren't much better just the skirts were heading up towards their neck, any higher they'd be wearing a Snood. It was pretty bad and the music, god don't get me started on that. Apart from our last choice of drinking hole it was a great night all finished off with a king size donner kebab meat and chips with BBQ sauce, "it doesn't get much better than that" as Alan Partridge would say.
Valentines day, Well its a bit of a money making scam in my book so i prefer to do something different. Most people go out to a restaurant at least once a month so going out for a meal to me means nothing as you can do that anytime and it ain't that special. So, i like to do something that will remind you of that day. I pre booked seats for the premier of "Paul" the film about an Alien and 2 british guys in America. The papers had slated it but all i can say is not everyone likes the same thing and Helen and I laughed so hard we were crying, it was great, along with a x-large box of salted popcorn it was better than sitting in a restaurant.
Watched the brit awards, wish i hadn't. Liked Take Thats performance, liked Adele but can someone please tell me what Cheryl Cole is doing being nominated for Best British Femlae Artist when she hasn't sung live once. Also Justin Bieber, Best International Breakthrough Act, whats so breakthrough about a weak voiced teenager singing over a backing track, i,ve seen loads like him in the karaoke bars on Zakynthos and seen some alot better. Man that kids so sugar sweet its sickening. at christmas i saw his autobiography (very short read), then plugged endlessly on every tv channel you switch to and now a film, are you being serious? a film about a kid with an average voice and a haircut that looks like its still being cut by his mum with a bowl on his head LOL. I think the brits have lost their way and are a joke now. I remember a few years ago in the Best British Female Artist section P.J. Harvey, Kate Bush and Annie Lennox were nominated and none of them had released a single in years. Oh well it can only get worse, bring back Sam Fox and Mick Fleetwood i say haha.
Starting now to get lights, furnishings and paint together for bar and looking for flights to go over in March to start the work so its getting exciting, also the chain of events over here in the UK has begun, can't say to much yet as its just the first step but its looking good but most of the events will be taking place while in Zakynthos but by the time i get back in Oct it will all be sorted.
I'm sure there was more to write about but Judge Judy on the tv is putting me off and i've lost my train of thought but if i remember what i was going to write i'll update it later. Have to say though its not all Judge Judy's fault my memory is getting real bad, i have to write on a piece paper the night before what i have to do the next day but its ok as medical reports have shown that speaking welsh helps with Alzheimers, i didn't make that up its been proved. I don't know which is worse, not remembering things or dribbling over myself having to speak welsh LOL.
Galw'r heddlu! Mae fy hofrenfad yn llawn llyswennod!
Thursday, 10 February 2011
My Stuffed Marrow and Spanish Beef Cake.
After the taste sensation and success of my main course i looked at what was left in the fridge and went on to make a Sweet Potato, Parsnip and Apple soup with a Sausage meat, onion and basil dumpling. Once again a triumph. I don't see why these cooks get their own shows on TV, if an idiot like myself can pull any old ingredients together and make a meal it cant be that hard. I see my arch enemy Heston Blumenthal is opening a new restaurant in London and has a new show starting on channel 4, some of his new wonders at Mandarin Oriental are cucumber ketchup (so green sludge that tastes of nothing), slow cooked ribs (hang on thats not unusal), cured mackrel (has he lost his edge). I watched a documentary about Heston and he was serving some shell fish which looked perfectly normal but he served a side plate of a conch shell with an ipod slipped inside it with headphones for you to listen to the sea as you ate. What? So the food was just the same as any other restaurant but because you can get sea sick while your eating it you have to pay over the odds and he gets a michelin star lol Come on anyone can come up with a dish and get a michelin star if thats the case. "Here we have a blamanche made to look like a chicken carcuss and parsnips made to look like the bones from a filleted fish on a bed of green marzipan made to look like rotten cabbage served on a bustbin lid, its called Tramps Dinner" There you go how easy was that, now wheres my michelin star haha.
My michelin star winning Sweet Potato, Parsnip and Apple soup with Sausage meat dumpling.
So after my last 2 posts being almost as long as war and peace its just a short update today but we are now looking towards Zakynthos and trying to get the plans in action so hope your all looking forward to your holidays now and getting excited. We'll all be in the sun soon, woohoo!
Friday, 4 February 2011
We arrived on the island at midday on Wed 26th to a blue sky and sun, ah bliss, just the start to a holiday you want. The transfer mini bus was a brand new Saab, Great. As we started to make our way to the resort i was then reminded of why i didn't like Spain. It is such a characterless place, huge estates of white buildings with not one curve just all right angles. These types of buildings stretched on for miles and miles along the coastline. the roads are excellent but again the roadsides were all manmade with palm trees planted all along and dark gravel surrounding them. With Greek islands its a much more natural feel to its whole look.
We arrive in Costa Teguise one of the smaller resorts and at our hotel. We were right on the edge of the resort which we liked and it was only a 10 minute walk to the centre.
Reception Hall in Hotel
The hotels natural beach and sea pool
We put our bags in room, didn't even unpack and off we went for a walk about. The resort wasn't that big but something was bothering me, where have i seen this resort before, then it came to me, Butlins! At the heart of the resort was a centre with all the restaurants, bars, supermarkets and tat shops. All roads led to this centre and along those roads were a few smaller centres and the odd bar. It was like someone from the Spanish gouverment had taken a holiday in the UK many years ago, stayed at a Butlins and said "Eureka" thats how we'll set up the Canary Islands, it was the same on Gran Canaria and Tenerife. Huge blocks of white apartments with roads leading off them to the entertainment centre. We had a look around and headed back but stopped at the last bar out of the resort nearest our hotel. More about this bar later. We went back to our room and chilled out after a long day of traveling and watched the sun set ready to start our holiday tomorrow.
Woke up threw back the curtains and there it was, grey horrible clouds, BUGGER! Nevermind, it will pass. Night time came, the clouds didnt pass.
Beer brewed from Dogs (JOKE!)
Then on our last night we both decided we wanted a steak so i remembered seeing "La Vaca Loca" grill house that was always full and usually had locals in there. We got very lucky and caught the the last table available. We ordered a mussle, crab and prawn starter which was very very tastey and served in a large mussle shell wish i'd ordered more than just the one plate now, then the main course we both had Argentinian Sirloin steak which again was huge but they brought out a Argentinian steak sauce called "Cimichurri" for us to use if we wished, so we decided to give it a go, the bowl they served it in was empty by the time we finished with it, we smothered everything in it it was that good.
Patio Canaria Restaurant
Another volcano on another canary island
Puerto del Margate lol
So now time for a brief sum up about Lanzarote, the island i didn't like, the weather was rubbish, drinks were way overpriced apart from lager, wine and Sangria, brits were moody and ignorant and we got ripped off for milk in a shop 3 euro when we found it elsewhere for 83 cents. Food was fantastic, spanish people were friendly, loved the restaurants and we made the holiday good ourselves. Would i go back to Spain or its islands? Only if someone else paid for the holiday and my spending money LOL Its ok for the warmer weather and food buts thats all. Its to "Britified" for my liking, a new word i've come up with which means its got more in common with Britain than it has with its own country. Don't see the appeal of a place like that. I hated it when the Old Road in Kalamaki got a pavement.
And just a thought for Zakynthos, i spoke to a few spanish onwers while we were out and about and they all said the same thing, businesses are failing and closing in the resort and its all down to one thing. No its not the pound to euro, no its not the tourists not going there and no its not down to prices. Its all down to those horrble, plastic, clipped coloured wrist bands you see people wearing, All Inclusive. There were many business properties laying empty, shops, bars, restaurants all closed up and up for rent, if this is what it has done to a resort the size of Costa Teguise what will it do to Kalamaki? The 4 largest hotel complexes in Costa Teguise would take up most of Kalamaki resort but there are many more hotels and apartments in the resort but still Costa Teguise is struggling. So imagine if the 4 biggest hotels in Kalamaki went AI that would leave the resort in a terrible way. When will the local Zakynthian council take note of other countries and their resorts and see what the AI is doing to the smaller local businesses. Maybe they should take a look some day as its a sad state these places have got themselves in to and it would be hard to get back to the old ways. Even the Aquarium in Costa Teguise was closed down, that might have been because of all the fish on Helens plate lol.
Oh and even though the weather was pants, i got in the pool. In this pic i look quite calm don't i, well lets just say the water was that cold that my gentleman vegtables vanished in a milli-second of hitting the water HAHA!