perjantai 29. helmikuuta 2008

Dark side of Lighthouse

I´ve added a new widget to the left side of this website, Weazelnews. That´s the official Radio Station in the future notorious XBox360 console game, Grand Theft Auto IV. I don´t tell you more :-)

keskiviikko 27. helmikuuta 2008

First pics of Spain trip in Flickr


Mijas Pueblo

Just north of Fuengirola there´s a nice little village/town called Mijas Pueblo. It´s often referred a "white village" and it has been presented as Spain´s most beautiful village. I definitely agree, even haven´t been visited anywhere else in Spain.

A half an hour bus ride away from Fuengirola, a local Portillo bus took us up to the mountains. From the bus window we saw a beautiful nice white city like in the Spanish tourist commercials and it took our breath away. Before we entered the small main street, we could see that this place is worth visiting for everyone coming to Costa del Sol.

After going through some tourist shops selling clothes, postcards and all the other normal souvenirs, we entered the town centre, Plaza Virgen de la Peña. Sun was shining and the day was quite perfect!

Spanish flamenco sounds were coming from the Plaza and there were three traditional Spanish entertainers dancing. We enjoyed this show with many kinds of traditional music for nearly an hour. I think it was called malaguena. Most amazing was that after one set one or two of them rushed to the other side of the street to a tourist information point and changed their clothes in less than 10 minutes. And they weren´t easy clothes to change. I remember thinkin that I must listen to this malaguena music and get to know it better, because it sounded really good. Tasty Malaga wine was offered to tourists as well.

We started strolling around the village, visited a small church and started to make our way to the northern parts of the town. After crisscrossing many small paths we found the way up to the small hermitage up on the mountain.

Stony path lead the way there through some badly burnt trees. There have been a large forest fire in the few years back and the many trees still have dead branches and green tops. Funny looking, but reminds us that nature is something more than just beautiful sights for us to see. The whole Mijas Pueblo was evacuated then. Hermitage was really small and the doors were closed. The view from there was magnificent!

Mijas Pueblo has a speciality, Burro Taxis (Donkey). The donkeys are very well taken care of and and we were told that one Burro-driver was fined because he talked on his mobile phone during a ride. Like car drivers.

The patron saint of the village is Virgin de la Peña. There´s a shrine in the village center. Sadly it was closed too. It is set in the rock by the El Compas vantage point. According to legend the image of the Virgen was hidden during five centuries and was found in 1586 by a builder, the father of two shepherd boys who were led to the hiding place by a dove. We looked through a glass window and saw a churchlike room filled with yellow flowers.

We ate in a nice small street restaurant, I just can´t remember the name of the place. A little tasteless food, more taste was needed. Desserts were very good! And Estrella Damm is much better beer than San Miguel.

Please add this place in your plans if you are planning to visit Costa del Sol. You won´t be disappointed.

Here´s some malaguena music:

Now playing: Blackmore's Night - Spanish Nights (I Remember It Well)

tiistai 26. helmikuuta 2008


Flag of Fuengirola

Andalucia is a southern autonomous community in Spain. Fuengirola belongs in Malaga province in that community. It´s one of the major tourist resorts on the southern coastal cities in municipality of Costa del Sol with 62 000 inhabitants. With tourist season four times that, so tourism is vital to it´s living. More of those little fancy details you can find in Wikipedia or somewhere else. It was clearly a tourist city. Everywhere there were cranes and construction sites. And I just dont´t mean a few - I mean tens and tens. Right opposite the entrance of our hotel there were two hotels/apartementos/blocks of flats about to be build. Our guide said that Spaniards have made research in the Central European countries and there are masses of people about to be retired in the next ten years and many of those have said that they want to spend some months of their time in the year in the sun. Especially Brits, Dutch and Germans. And the whole Southern coastal Spain is awaiting this and are preparing for this. Even in the Malaga Airport is about to be expanded in two years to triple it´s size. Old is repaired and new is born all the time. If you visit this area in future, say 8-10 years, it will be quite different.

But because the city is in constant progress, there
are much to be done too in the basic city system, for example irrigation. We had many rainy days and the streets had large ponds of water and although all the water is needed, it was very hard to walk in the streets to avoid wetting your shoes.

City has beaches over 8 kilometres and Paseo Maritimo (the street alongside the beaches) is the pearl of this city. It´s been taken care of with great detail. The second day we visited the beaches when there was a
storm with rain and wind. And the sea had eaten all the sand so the beaches were quite completely wasted. Our guide said that the reconstruction of the beaches will cost nearly 12 million euros to rebuild. I wonder where they get all the sand in there? The time was special, storms have visited the coastal Spain for about two weeks before we arrived and propably lasted for about 3 weeks or so.

The city has a nice old market hall where we ate the traditional Spanish tapas, encouraged by the locals. Nice people and nearly always polite. Some are so used to tourists that they don´t bother to be nice, but almost all do.

I don´t have anything bad to say about the Spaniards, only in one occasion
. That´ll be a story of it´s own. Sad to say but the Brits were in some places quite rude to many and the Dutch very very heartwarming. We didn´t meet many Finns excluding our tourist colleagues although there are about 10 000 Finns living in Fuengirola. One is even elected to the city council so Finns have an impact of this city´s way of life. There´s a lively Finnish community,including parish with two pastors, but we didn´t visit any of the occasions.

Other great place in Fuengirola is the Zoo. But that´s the next story...

Now playing: Vangelis - Hispanola

maanantai 25. helmikuuta 2008

Home sweet home

Like in an old Mötley Crüe son, home sweet home! A week in Spain is over.

We had a great time, visited nice places and meet differend kind of persons: Spanish, Finns, Swedes, Dutch, Brits ( a lot´s of them!) and many more. I´ll be adding photos in the Flickr this week, I shot nearly 400 photos. But now it´s good to be home again and remember last weeks happenings.

The weather was not such a good match that we originally thought. Only a few days without rain and wind. It was not Costa del Sol (coast of Sun), but as it was originally named Costa del Fuente (Coast of Wind). For example we couldn´t swim in an outside pool at all, luckily there were an inside pool too. But we never expected hot days, just mild warm would´ve been terrific. Temperatures were about 15-17 Celsius, and rainless hours were still many. Umbrellas saved our days many times, so this was not so bad as it looks like here written.Hotel or apartemento was great, but had a little flaws too.

In the following week, I´ll write some memoirs from the trip. But I have promised that many times, and then I couldn´t get them here anyway. So no promises.

But here´s a little taste for things to come, not my photo, but I have many from this place in camera´s memory card.:

Now playing: Willie Nelson - Time After Time

maanantai 11. helmikuuta 2008

Holiday´s awaiting...

Just three working days and my winter holidays are here. Great!

I´ll be on holidays and off-work for two weeks. In the first week we are travelling to the sun of Spain. I´ve never been in that part of Europe so I think the week will be a lots of fun. Although we are travelling with too many Finns (I presume) and to the small city/town called Fuengirola, a tourist haven in Andalucia, we try to get the glimpse of ordinary Spanish life too.

So some normal winter holiday expected: swimming, tourist attractions, zoo, Spanish food, villagemarkets, relaxing, city strolling and so on. And warm weather!!

Scorpions: Holiday

Weine nicht - don´t cry

Another nice song in German. This one´s from the synthpop band called D.-pressiv. Depressing? You decide