Friday, 20 July 2012

Flames of hell in Paradise

For the last three days vast areas of Madeira, approximately 10% of the landmass,  have been engulfed by flames. See the satellite picture below.

Plumes of smoke billow from east to west 
Four major forest fires are causing havoc around the island - the one near Funchal is causing the most concern.

Close to the airport - and residential areas of Santa Cruz
Flames surrounding the motorways to the airport and east of the island
Funchal watches nervously as the flames create a halo of  fear
Residents do all they can to help the firefighters
The displaced are en route to sheltered accommodation
The heroes who have worked non stop for three days and nights
Perilously close- the smoke penetrates all the city's homes
Our beautiful purple-green mountains will take years to recover.
The Palheiro Golf Club area is worst hit
No comment required...
This plane has just taken off from Funchal Airport
Political message from the fire brigade "Today we are heros, tomorrow
we'll be forgotten and abandoned - but we'll never abandon our people"

Moderate winds are aiding the spread of embers and frustrating the fire fighters. Extra fire fighting crews and equipment have arrived from the mainland.

It is heartbreaking to see the devastation of our prized flora and the scarring of this very green and lovely land.

The saddest part is that the authorities are now convinced the fires were started deliberately.

If, as some suspect but I find hard to believe, this is some kind of political protest, I denounce the cowards who would rather scorch the land than face their opponents in open and democratic debate.


Sunday, 15 July 2012

To my absent friends, with love

After reading a message on FB from a friend who has since moved away, I decided to dedicate this post to those special people who have touched my life and left unforgettable good  impressions.

Martin Uvgard: Singing partner and source of laughter

You have moved back home to Sweden, settled down and are now raising a family. I know you miss the old times, you've said so on FB. The music sessions in particular, and, I hazard a guess, the regular road trips. Your sense of humour, which I particularly liked, ensured laughter every time. Remember the "sweet potato" scene? I miss you, pal, hope to see you soon.

PS. Maybe a trip to Serra D'Agua Poncha Bar and a beer and song at Warm Up after?

Stefan Wiksten: Road trip and drinking buddy.

You have also moved on, back home, and I miss your company. You were always present at my gigs and always available for whatever was going down. Your ability to consume vast amounts of beer and always remain in control, inspired me. See you soon pal, and don't eat yellow snow!

PS:all the drinking establishments in Madeira (all 6000) send their kindest regards.

Keith Hazel: Bringer of peace and order.

It's been some years since we last shared a drink and a chat; you are in the UK and I'm here. Nonetheless, I know we will meet up again, some time, some place, and catch up on the gossip. Your kindness and understanding shone through, like beacons of hope in the darkest hours. See you soon

PS. Man U still sucks

David Meacock: The kindest person I've ever known.

We've been friends for many years, but fate has taken  us to different countries and different life styles.. You were my kindred spirit, my shoulder to cry on. We have the same sense of humour, based on  wit and observation and share the same desire of helping all those who are less fortunate than us. Empathy and humour you have in abundance. See you soon pal, and maybe a trip to Twynersh.

PS. Still the technophobe and the only person on earth without a FB account?

Darren Conolly: The bravest man I have ever met. RIP.

You were living under a death sentence from a crippling, inoperable  brain tumour, but still had more courage to confront everyday problems, than I ever will. The chemotherapy sessions left you so ill you could hardly talk for days at a time, but you wanted to come to work, as you said, for a laugh, but I knew you really just wanted to help me. Unlike the other names above, I have no chance of ever meeting you again, and that saddens me. You died so young, not even making it to thirty. Thank you pal, you were an inspiration, a beautiful person and I miss  you terribly.

PS. If only there was "the other side", we'd meet up again :(

And to other significant, absent  "friends":

L.M: If only...

T.O: Your sparkling beauty always lifts the gloom.

S.P: In my dreams we're still a couple.

M.B: Always on my mind. Jag √§lskar dig fortfarande.

And last, but not least, to my "absent" blog friends, whom I've got to know over the last two years through their writing and believe that if we ever meet up, we'll know so much about each other we'll all get on and have a great time.

 Hugs to ;  Momma C,  Dicky,  MC,  Angeline,  Jules,  Tempo,  Dan,  Kane,  Kelly


Thursday, 12 July 2012

100 Words: Night people

I am presently living a nocturnal life. Getting home before 5:00 am is a rare event. 

I live alone and love socializing. Those facts have turned me into a night owl. Also, I don't need to get up early for work.

I sometimes  wonder what reasons motivate others who also choose to permanently dwell in the darkest hours.

Are they damaged or displaced souls?

Are they running away from others or even from themselves?

Are they running away from things they did and things they didn't do?

Or maybe, like myself, it is all those things, and much much more..


Sunday, 8 July 2012

100 Words: Beauty

She sways across my field of vision, not for the first time today, and I momentarily hold my breath. I don't know why I should risk suffocation, but it must have something to do with her beauty.

Stunning-even when at work and half covered
with an ice scoop

She is gorgeous. Silky brow hair just covering her subtle shoulder tattoo, the loveliest sparkling smile and a figure shaped to perfection.

There is not a single sign of ugliness about her. No imperfections, no matter how hard I scrutinize - in a subtle way, of course.

If Nature has created anything as wonderful as woman, it has kept it all to itself.


Friday, 6 July 2012

Madeira - small but perfectly formed

Here are some pics of Madeira and you will see some of the many  reasons why I call it paradise.

At it's highes point, 1800 metres high -  just above the clouds
Stunning scenery 

No snakes or biting insects hidden among the lush landscape

More fresh water than we need
The landscaped centre of Monte village - 
Evergreen throughout  the year
Never more than an hour from the sea.The natural rock
 pools of Porto Moniz
The village of Curral das Freiras is built in the crater
of an ancient and extinct volcano
Funchal - quaint little town


Monday, 2 July 2012

30 Words: Aeternum vale

I sat down, pen and paper ready, to write Mum a eulogy, six months after she passed away,

but the ink decided to frolic with my tears in lunatic swirls...

Sweet Mother of mine x