Sunday 26 November 2023



    International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women was marked on the 25th of November all over the world.  

    Violence against women and girls continues to be a problem in our world, and the UN wants us to join together to show that we do care. We are asked to remind our worldwide governments that there is no place for violence in our societies in any way we can.

    The UNiTE campaign, incorporating this violation of human rights commenced on the same day and will last for 16 days, their slogan this year is #NoExcuse.

    Today I've included a poem By Lord Byron from the early 19th century. I've included this because I want to celebrate women for their beauty inside and out. Women deserve to be respected for who they are and there is #NoExcuse.


She Walks in Beauty

She walks in beauty, like the night

Of cloudless climes and starry skies;

And all that’s best of dark and bright

Meet in her aspect and her eyes;

Thus mellowed to that tender light

Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more,  one ray the less,

Had half impaired the nameless grace

Which waves in every raven tress,

Or softly lightens over her face;

Where thoughts serenely sweet express

How pure, how dear their dwelling place.

And on that cheek, and over that brow,

So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,

The smiles that win, the tints that glow,

But tell of days and goodness spent,

A mind at peace with all below,

A heart whose love is innocent!

George Gordon Byron 1814


Friday 17 November 2023

Water, Water, Every where!!



Santa Cruz


    The  world we live in as we know is made up of land and vast areas of water. Unfortunately, the water we’re surrounded by is not always easily available or, drinkable.

    Through the ages, man has continued to pursue different ways to provide us all with this vital drink for life.

    Our supply in Tenerife comes from the island's own water resources and desalination plants. Whilst the water is  not harmful to drink, I can't say it is very pleasant to taste. There is a high mineral content because much of of it is desalinated sea water and therefore like most of the population I choose to buy bottled water.


   There are still various reminders dotted around the island in the towns and cities of how the population accessed and cleaned their water. I've included some photos of a dripstone used for purification in times gone by and some of the public wells that are still dotted around.


Puerto de la Cruz

   I hope and pray that one day everyone will be able to turn on a tap and obtain clean drinking and cooking water throughout the world.


Water, water, everywhere,

And all the boards did shrink,

Water, water, everywhere,

Nor any drop to drink.


The Rime of the Ancient Mariner  by Simon Taylor Coleridge .

Tuesday 31 October 2023

Hunter’s Moon


In the distance what can the father and son hear?

They hope it is the grunt or snort of a deer.

Without the last of the season’s hunt, there will be no food.

For the boy’s siblings, and the rest of the man’s hungry brood.


The vegetation is now laid bare.

Through the darkness the two can with little hindrance stare.


The passing clouds  cause the night shadows to deceive.

The snap of a twig, the hoot of an owl, the eager hunters could easily misconceive.

The moon rises high.

The clouds disperse from the sky.


The prize of the night, is now visible and in their sight.

Thankfully this winter, the family's table can be laid with both bowl and spoon.

Thanks to nature and the Hunter’s moon.


 By Christina Rowell



Pictures of exhibits in National Museum Edinburgh, photographed by Christina Rowell

Wednesday 25 October 2023



    It will soon be Halloween, and depending on how fertile the imagination of an individual kid is, it can be a scary time.

    As a child, I loved reading scary books and poems at this time of year. My imagination ran amok, and of course, it still does.

   Books by Lewis Carrol gave me the heebie-jeebies, following Alice as she tried to decide what path to take in her life, amongst other things. 

    In reality, navigating from childhood to adulthood can be tricky and frightening occasionally with Carrol portraying the darker-side perfectly. 

    I enjoyed his nonsensical poem, Jabberwocky and being someone who loves anything about good versus evil, especially if the protagonist is slaying mythical creatures, it’s perfect.

    Extract: Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll

   One, two! One, two! And through and through

The vorpel blade went snicker-snack!

He left it dead, and with its head

He went galumphing back.

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?

Come to my arms, the beamish boy!

O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”

He chortled in his joy.

Alice in Wonderland books by Lewis Carroll

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Alice’s Adventures Under Ground

Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There

(Sorry, I didn’t have any pics of the Jabberwocky) he was a little camera shy!!

Monday 9 October 2023

Prickly Heat


    The weather here in Tenerife has been on the hot side the last few weeks, today for example nearer forty than thirty degrees Celsius. Trying to keep the plants on my terrace alive has been near impossible as the heat has been relentless.

    It’s not a huge area by any manner of means, but it is nice to surround yourself with a little greenery. So, the other day we traveled 7 kilometers to our nearest garden center.

    To be honest the center itself isn’t so different from the ones there are in the UK. Lots of accessories for around the home as you enter. Including rugs, throws, mirrors and terrace furniture. Not forgetting seasonal items, Halloween and Christmas are the stars of the show at present.

    Leaving the homeware behind you enter a vast area filled with all kinds of plant life. The air is humid and very warm, some of the plants and trees have shade others just love to soak up the sun.

    After walking around for a good hour or so, I still didn’t make my mind up. However, I have decided that cacti and other succulent plants are best for my outside space. 

    Until we head back to the garden center I’ll just have to make do with the local park and other beautiful areas that are in my community.


Wednesday 4 October 2023

Hope In The Heart



 They cram together sometimes one hundred or more,

In search of another shore.

They have said their farewells,

And risk the ocean’s perilous  swells.

A mixture of races including African and Asian,

Longing for a safe haven.

Seeking shelter from dangers and distress,

With a heartfelt hope of protection and even success.

Monday 2 October 2023

It’s All In The Way We Say It



     Language is complicated, many words have multiple meanings and of course, some words are different but sound the same (homophones).  

     Everything can change when we use an incorrect term in a sentence. That one wrong pronunciation can change a simple turn of phrase into something vulgar or uncouth. 

    This I have learned to my detriment when speaking Spanish. I’ve asked all sorts of strange questions over the years, some have been answered politely, others have received a quizzical look.

    On Saturday night my partner and I went out to eat, my bulging waistline is a testament to that. The restaurant was busy and we were seated close to the next table, where two English ladies in their senior years were seated. They had finished their meal and were in the process of getting their bill. 

    When the waiter arrived with the itemized check, one of the ladies looked it over and questioned an item. The waiter who spoke perfect English answered clearly and with precision. However, the lady didn’t quite understand and after some discussion, both became a little frustrated. Wanting to put her at ease he asked her if she would like him to copulate it again. At this point, my ears pricked up. 

    Initially, I thought I had misheard, but after he repeated the sentence 3 or 4 times over, I realized I hadn’t. Of course, he had meant to use the word calculate. Yes, a slight faux pas on his behalf. I'm ashamed to say I did chuckle at the time and I still am.  

    Do you think after a few gin and tonics, the word may become a homophone?

    Cheers folks have a great week!