Thursday, November 15, 2018

I was unlucky

The rain we were promised came in the early hours of the morning.

I woke to go to the toilet and could hear distant thunder. Then I heard the rain outside the bedroom. The thunder got closer and the rain increased in intensity. Eventually, it calmed down and I was able to get back to sleep.

In the meantime, Pam just slept through it!!

Looking at the statistics for Orihuela it seems that 25mm or rain fell between about 5:30 and 6:30am. That must have been the time I woke up. 

The map shows that the whole of the coast is on alert for rain with Valencia on red alert. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

My gotcha

Here is Fonta at the event on Sunday, snapping away at the audience.

Note to Fonta, you need to bounce that flash upwards to avoid nasty shadows - especially in portrait mode. I had a fair bit of work to remove the shadow on the wall on my left in your photo.

He got me

Often, when Fonta and I are taking pictures at an event, we capture a quick shot of each other. We try to do it without being noticed.

Fonta certainly succeeded here, I had no idea he'd taken this until I saw it in his Facebook album.

Gender violence

Complete the weekend

So, Friday we are invited to the opening of the new classroom followed by a dance spectacular, Saturday there is the showing of the DVD that has been made collecting accounts from the senior citizens of the town and now we have a choral concert on Sunday.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Speaking about the old days

The Town Hall has produced a compilation of anecdotes from some of the oldest members of the community. In the DVD, the neighbours talk about the food they prepared, the musical tradition, the games they played etc etc.

The end result of this project will be screened this Saturday at 6pm.

Monday, November 12, 2018

Part one

The first part of my video about Bigastro, made using my drone, is live on YouTube.

I now need to move on to grabbing shots of the town and video of the market garden so I can complete the second part.

You can view the first part using this link. It includes shots of La Pedrera and Villas Andrea.

Honoured for his work

In a delightful ceremony yesterday, Pascual Segura was named as the official historian to the town.

My first contact with Pascual was when he was producing a blog about the history of the town. Soon after he launched a page on Facebook with old photos that people supplied him with.

As a musician in the band, Pascual became involved in sorting out the archives of the Musical Society to ensure that they were properly preserved for generations to come.

As part of his website project, Pascual decided to interview people in the town that he considered interesting. Thus I became the second person to feature on his website.  I had already supplied Pascual with thousands of photos of the band which he described as the archive for the future.

His next project was to investigate the scientist, Thomas Villanova. After an enormous amount of research, Pascual was able to present an illustrated talk about the bigastrense. He was also able to write a book which was published with assistance from the Province.

His latest research about the Auroros led to a further pamphlet which details the history of this tradition in the town.

At the same time, Pascual has produced articles about aspects of the town's history e.g. the time when it was bombed during the Civil War.

In my photos, Pascual being presented with his certificate from the town and then being congratulated by the lady mayor on receiving a medal to mark his entry into the Royal Association of Historians.

One to watch

We'd recommend that, those of you who have UK TV, watch Peter Jackson's "They Shall Not Grow Old" if you haven't already done so.

As a film in its own right it is compelling but as a documentary about conditions during the 1st World War, it is a must.

Jackson used old black and white archive footage which was then colourised, retouched and stabilised before being dubbed with a soundtrack of banter, explosions and screams from the men who fought for Britain between 1914 and 1918.

BBC 2 11th November.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

New Year's Eve

As you know, New Year's Eve is the more important occasion during the Festive Season in Spain.

Camping La Pedrera are putting on a special meal which you can see from this menu.

A short video about us

A few weeks ago, one of our young Spanish friends, Eva Moya Melgarejo, asked if she could come to our house and interview us in English.

Eva is studying to be a video journalist and this was to be one of her projects 

Eva came armed with her camera and a sound recorder and proceeded to ask the questions she had prepared. At first she was a little nervous but soon became confident enough to appear professional.

Her interview complete, Eva then had to edit the footage to produce a final video and here it is.

We think Eva did a fantastic job and we were delighted to help her.

Friday, November 09, 2018

14 years and counitng

Yesterday was the anniversary of our arrival in Bigastro. We'd booked flights to Spain on many occasions before but that day, fourteen years ago,  was different because our flights were one way.

Everything was set, we visited the Bureau that was handling the purchase and signed the agreement for the final payment to be transferred to the builders. Then it was just a matter of waiting a few days for all our belongings to arrive in two large vans.

Those first weeks were busy as we settled into our new house and started the process of creating a home. There was also a great deal of paperwork to sort out including NIE numbers, Spanish wills etc etc.

At first, we felt like strangers in not just a new town but a new country. There was a lot to learn. Naturally, we bonded first with our British neighbours and took part in the events that they were organising.

However we were determined not just to be "Brits living in the sun", we wanted  to learn the language as best we could and get involved in the culture of the town. My interest in photography helped a great deal as the pictures I took became noticed by the Town Hall.

Over the years we have learnt more and more about the town and its cultural history. We have attended concerts and got to know some of the musicians. We have also attended many other events and learnt of their importance. Our growing interest attracted the attention of the local council, many of the local associations and our Spanish neighbours who now refer to us as bigastrense.

Our Spanish neighbours seemed to like our willingness to become involved and have been very supportive of us. It could have been different, they could have  regarded us as intrusive but no, they have welcomed us with open arms.

2017 was made a special year for us when the lady Mayor, via the Town Hall, asked us to be Third Age King and Queen at the annual fiesta. The warm reception we received during that special week is something that we will always remember.

So after fourteen years, do we have any regrets? None whatsoever. For Pam and I, it has proved to be the perfect place to retire to. Bigastro has become  the place where we want to be.

We look forward to many more years in our happy home.

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Congratulations, well deserved

When the position was first announced, we knew that there was only one person for the post. Pascual is a professional archivist and author of two books relating to the history of the town.