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...you are my sunshine... Spring is finally here and we can feel those first rays of sunshine beaming down on us after a rather odd spell of weather, which seemed to combine rain, cold and heat at sporadic times during the last couple of months. Finally the streets start to fill up, the bars appear more vibrant and the plazas are buzzing with life. You can find your way around these wonderful plazas by checking out our double page map in the middle of the magazine. What better way to take advantage of this than by grabbing a copy of inVLC and finding a nice spot in the sun with a coffee or a caña. With inVLC you can’t go wrong! We’ve got all the best live music listings for the next month or so (and keep an eye on those festival line ups as they start to land the bigger acts) on page 19. We visit the

In addition to all of this we have the usual goings on in terms of cinema, music albums, sport, green issues and expat life to provide a varied and interesting read. We’ve had some great feedback from our readers over recent months, both Spanish and English. We strive for quality at inVLC and are always looking for new ideas. Please use the contact details below if you have any comments or suggestions and remember to ‘like’ or ‘follow’ us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up-to-date and in the know about all things Valencia. Enjoy the read. Andy, Kelly & Sean

A lo largo de esta revista encontrarás distintos niveles de dificultad indicados en la parte superior de cada página y recuadros con vocabulario debajo del texto. Para la pronunciación hemos incluido la fonética.

inVLC is for all people in the community of Valencia: whether born here, visiting for a day, or living a new life in the sun. We hope to guide you on what’s going on in the community, help those living in it, and support language learning with a bit of added fun. Sales Vincenzo Translations Javier & Clara Contact information email invlceditor@gmail.com phone 633 822 614 - English speakers phone 628 831 400 - Spanish speakers facebook inVLC If you have any thoughts, comments or complaints or want to advertise, please email or phone us. Important numbers & Embassies / Consulates Fire | 080 Local police | 092 Medical | 061 General | 112 French | 96 351 0359 USA | 96 351 6973 British | 96 521 60 22 Dutch | 96 341 4633 German | 96 310 62 53 Legal chat We do our very best to strive for accuracy in this magazine but we cannot accept responsibility for unintentional errors or omissions, accuracy of advertisements or contributors’ opinions. We aim at all times not to offend. depósito legal V-816-2006

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wonderful village of Carcaixent on page 10, Valencian writer Blasco Ibáñez kicks off with Victor Hugo on page 6 and we learn to cook asparagus perfectly on page 25.

The latest Loving News keeping you up-to-date local products Hotspots Free in Valencia is enjoying wine I heart Valencia has a writer's block Holidays and fiestas it's a busy period Valencia Community we visit Carcaixent Independent shop review El Atelier Language Intercambio information Let's talk Expat life! Eoghan meets the future generation Talking teaching is planning for exams Map never get lost Art & culture Music hot new musical releases Live events only the best make it to the list Sport hot news The cinema V.O releases in Valencia Read me Sean loves his books Lifestyle Your photos of 'reflection' Green Declan is on the big picture Recipe long, twiggy asparagus Artists Inma Palmero & Joaquín López Art to see knows art A day in the life Liam Quashie Cocktails with wine, sweet wine Animal is buzzing Events & Classifieds keeps you in the know

WITH | Vicente Blasco Ibáñez versus Victor Hugo | parties & holidays | the best of Valencia & the Community | independent reviews | ¡aprende inglés con nosotros!

We use CreatorSilk paper It’s chlorine free & the wood used is from sustainably managed forests. We do this because we’re nice & want to reduce our environmental impact. 15/04/ 1947, Brooklyn Dodgers Jackie Robinson becomes the first African-American player in Major League Baseball. Segregation had existed for over 50 years. 50 years later his number becomes the first ever to be retired.

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usterity | The first Spanish Budget of 2012 was unveiled by Mariano Rajoy's ruling Popular Party at the end of March. The following details the main ways the Spanish Government are attempting to save €27bn. - Ministries' budgets cut by up to 50% - Civil servants' wages frozen - Electricity up 7% and gas up 5% - Unemployment benefit frozen - No rise in VAT - Pensions to rise in line with inflation - Corporation tax revenue to rise by reducing company deductions - Amnesty on tax evasion in return for 10% fee. Unemployment figures released this month show that 4.75 million Spanish are now claiming benefits (23.6% of the workforce) which is the highest level since records began. There are now real fears that this could hit 25% by the end of the year.

eachers' holidays at risk| The Generalitat has announced proposals to change holiday entitlements for state schoolteachers.

elebration of history| 22-24 April sees the annual Moors and Christians Festival in Valencia Community (the best example can be found in Alcoy about an hour to the south of Valencia). The festivals represent the capture of the city by the Moors and the subsequent Christian re-conquest between the 8th and 15th Centuries. The festival features parades of people dressed up in the finery of both sides to the soundtrack of fireworks, the smell of gunpowder and it all ends with the Christians winning a simulated battle.

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They propose summer holidays to run 1 -31/08 inclusive. July could be used for teacher training and initiatives to combat any educational failures with obligatory attendance. This means a loss of a month's holiday each year. Christmas holidays for pupils could change too with holidays from 24/12 (previously 23) to 6/01. The new proposals are still to be discussed and agreed by the unions and educational institutions before potentially becoming reality at the start of the next school year.

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ouse evictions| A record 58,200 families were evicted from their homes last year which is up 22% on 2010 figures with The Valencian Community (along with Cataluña and Madrid) the hardest hit. The Government has now been forced to issue new guidelines to banks on their eviction processes in an effort to give some help to people with payment difficulties. These include alternatives to eviction such as debt restructuring, writing off some of the debt, or accepting the return of the property to clear outstanding debt.

16/04/1943 In Switzerland, chemist Albert Hoffman accidentally consumes LSD-25, a synthetic drug he had created as part of his research into the medicinal qualities of lysergic acid diethylamide. 26 years later Woodstock happens.


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ant to see the Valencian Community on the cheap? Every month we'll we ll list some great spots where you can enjoy Spanish culture, nature and have some good, low-cost fun. This month we'll be:

1| heading over to the Botanics. It's time for the passion fruit flowers to bloom, and they are stunning. Entrance is €2 but there are concessions for groups and card holders. 2| heading into the wine bodegas to try something new. With so many taste sensations on offer, it's easy to find exciting flavours. We were impressed by locally made Mala Vida at €5.

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3| taking a hike in the hills of Adamuz. There are some very easy hikes with panoramic views. And if hiking isn't your thing, Adamuz has charming waterfalls and a lot of history and interesting old architecture. www.topwalks.net www.ademuz.es

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The year that the Botanical Gardens in Valencia was founded.

The price in Euros of the yearly Botanics pass which gives you free access, email updates on events & shop discounts. A €6 pass allows you 10 visits throughout the year.

The number of days with no entrance fee to the park| Tree day: 31/01, Museums day: 18/05, Day of Biological Diversity: 22/5, Environment day:5/6, Science day: In November.

The Botanical Gardens in Valencia offers a range of activities for all ages and genders. There are year-round displays of seasonal flowers to please the eye, whilst also growing medicinal and herbal species for research. Culturally the two dedicated spaces within the Gardens are often filled with interesting, provocative and diverse exhibitions, with art occasionally creeping out into the open air. There are also courses, outings and conferences to educate, inform and entertain. Jazz and classical concerts take place during the year, and when not, it offers a bit of peace and quiet in some of the crazier moments of life. www.jardibotanic.org

17/04/1961 The Bay of Pigs invasion starts when a CIA-financed group of Cuban refugees lands in Cuba and attempts to topple the government of Fidel Castro. It was a disaster and led to the Cuban Missile crisis the following year.


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I heart Valencia

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very month we take something from the world of Valencia and put it head-to-head with something from somewhere else. This month we’ve got a literary battle between Valencian writer Vicente Blasco Ibáñez and the Frenchman Victor Hugo.

Round 1 | Early life Born in Valencia on 29 January 1867, Vicente Blasco Ibáñez (VBI) was the son of a businessman. He obtained a law degree from the University of Valencia in 1888, but never pursued a career in law after graduation. Instead he divided his time between literature, politics and women, of whom he was a great admirer.

Round 2 | Family VBI married María Blasco in 1891 and they had four children: Mario (1891), Libertad (1895), Julio César (1896), and Sigfrido (1902). Julio César died at the young age of 24 at the hands of typhus fever. Sigfrido went on to become a politician and journalist and fled the country during the civil war.

Hugo was an illegitimate child born in Besançon, France on 12 February 1802. Born into a politically turbulent France, this was further heightened in the family home where his father, who was a high ranking officer in Napoleon's army, and his Royalist mother. They both exhibited the ideologies of the two battling sides.

Hugo got engaged to Adèle Foucher in secret as his mother did not approve and eventually married her in 1822 (after his mother died in 1821). He had five children with Adèle: Léopold (1823), Léopoldine (1824), Charles (1826), FrançoisVictor (1828) and Adèle (1830). Léopold died in infancy. Léopoldine died at the age of 18 in a boating accident on the Seine, Charles went on to become an award-winning author, not much is known of François-Victor, and Hugo also had difficulties with his youngest Adèle, who was never quite as sociable as Léopoldine. She was later confined to a nursing home suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.

Vicente Blasco Ibáñez

WINNER – Victor Hugo (to be a fly on the wall at the Hugo's g dinner table.))

WINNER – Vicente Blasco Ibáñez (a much more fortunate outcome for his offspring.)

Round 3 | Works VBI wrote over forty novels. Los cuatros jinetes del Apocalypsis - The Four Horsemen Of The Apocalypse (1916) was translated into English in 1918 and was the biggest selling book in the US in 1919. Arroz y tartana (1894), La barraca and Cañas y barro (1902) are considered to be his most ‘Valencian’ novels. But VBI didn’t just write novels, he also wrote a number of plays and became the editor and owner of the controversial and very popular periodical El Pueblo, for which he wrote a number of articles. After a period of particular importance in his career between 18941898, the term Blasquismo was coined to describe his politicised work and realism. In his later years he also embarked on a number of film projects, many of which were adaptations of his novels. Hugo used romanticism as a tool to voice his politics. Hugo wrote over 50 books, and his romantic poetry brought him fame at an early age, earning him a royal pension from Louis XVIII. For many Hugo is associated with his great work about social justice Les Misérables (1862), which would have enormous success as a novel and later as an opera. Le Dernier jour d’un condamné – The Last Day of a Condemned Man (1829), Notre-Dame de Paris – The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1831), and an essay on William Shakespeare (1864) are also other notable works. WINNER - Hugo (Les Misérables AND The Hunchback of Notre Dame!! Legend!)

18/04/1974 Italian prosecutor Mario Sossi is kidnapped by The Red Brigades. It was the first time that the left-wing terrorist group had directly struck the Italian Government. It leads to 10 years of conflict between the two sides.


He returned to France in 1870 a national hero and for his eightieth birthday in 1882 a six-hour-long parade passed in front of his home. More than two million people attended his public funeral on 22 May 1885. Hugo was considered a statesman as well as a writer and partly responsible for the forming of the Third Republic and, ultimately, democracy in France. WINNER – Victor Hugo (perhaps more widely known and more influential on a world scale.)

OVERALL WINNER Hugo 3 – 2 Blasco Ibáñez A good fight put up by the strongwilled Valencian, but ultimately difficult to topple such a grand literary figure. In Valencia, however, Blasco Ibáñez is always visible and ever-present in a Spain, which he would no doubt have a few words to say about were he alive today. y

Victor Hugo

them being read. He was responsible Round 4 | Politics Yo soy un hombre de acción, que he for eliminating the death penalty from hecho en mi vida algo más que libros. constitutions in Geneva, Portugal and Colombia. Granted amnesty I am a man of action; I’ve done more by Napoleon in 1859, Hugo refused in my life than just write books. to return to France until 1870 after Napoleon’s fall from power. During the VBI fled to France in 1890 because siege of the Prussian army in 1870, of a rally he organised against conservative politician Antonio Hugo was forced to “eat the unknown” to stay alive and famously accepted Cánovas del Castillo. A number of articles written for La Bandera Federal animals given to him by the local zoo. led to detainment, particularly the WINNER – VBI (imprisoned for his manifesto Unión Republicana written beliefs and unwavered by the forces in 1893. Once La Bandera Federal was against him.) dissolved VBI set up El Pueblo. His article En pleno absolutismo saw him thrown into prison again, forcing him to hand the reins of El Pueblo to Salvador Round 5 | Legacy Mateo. He took part in a protest against VBI is one of the most important the Cuban War of Independence Spanish writers from the literary branches of Realism and Naturalism. at the Plaza de Toros de Valencia, The Centro de Estudios de Blasco fled to Italy to continue his writings Ibáñez enjoyed a period of success condemning the war and was thrown in the Ayuntamiento de Burjassot into prison again in 1896. In 1898 he between 1996-1998. Of course there was in prison again for the story La paella del roder. He created the Partido is Avenida Blasco Ibáñez where the University of Valencia’s main campus del Unión Republicana Autonomista (PURA) in 1898, of which he was named can be found. It is perhaps unfortunate and ironic that the extension of this representative five times. very road to La Malvarrosa may indeed spell destruction for Ibáñez’s beloved Hugo entered the Higher Chamber Cabañal, where his family chalet has in France in 1941 where he argued against the death penalty and social been turned into a museum. injustice. Although he lived in France for most of his life, Hugo had to live Hugo was a grand master of in exile after Napoleon’s coup d’état romanticism and a champion of in 1851, moving from Brussels to realism – contemporaries include Jersey and then on to Guernsey until Camus, Dickens and Dostoyevsky. Napoleon’s defeat in the FrancoLes Misérables is one of the longest Prussian War. Hugo saw Napoleon running shows at London’s West End and his poems have been adapted as a traitor to France and voiced this by composers such as Rachmaninov in public – the pamphlets Napoléon and Wagner. le Petit and Histoire d’un crime were banned in France, but this did not stop

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19/04/1993 Live on TV the FBI launch a devastating tear gas and fireball attack on the Branch Davidian Compound in Waco, Texas. A gun battle ensues and leads eventually to 85 sect members (20 children) and 4 FBI officers dying.


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San Vicente Ferrer | Sun 16 April The Patron Saint of Valencia is revered with a day in his memory on the approximate anniversary of his death. There will be activities at his old home, which is now a church on Pouet de San Vicent, 1, near Plaza Tetuan. A flower offering will be made there at midday, a parade will start at the Cathedral at 7pm and in the evening there will be stages re-enacting his miracles in various locations in the city. This festival will also be celebrated in towns around the Community, so check them out! Fiesta del Trabajo | Tues 1 May A bank holiday to enjoy with your friends and family. Cruzes de Mayo | 3 May Installations of stunning floral crosses throughout the city as the locals ask God for protection.

Virgen de los Desamparados| Sat 12 & Sun 13 May The Virgin of the Helpless is the Patroness of Valencia. She holds a lily and baby Jesus, who himself carries the cross. She has a slight forward tilt, giving her the nickname of La Geperudeta de Valencia (the hunchback). She is highly thought of as she helps children, the blind and the mentally & physically ill. 12/05 Sat 11pm | The city band plays in Pl. de la Virgen followed by fireworks & dancing. 12/05 Sat night 12pm | Fireworks in the Turia near Torres de Serranos then more dancing in Pl. de la Virgen. 13/05 5am Sun | Misa Descoberta Mass, Discovery Mass. 8am Sun | Misa de infantes An open-air altar decorated with flowers will be erected in Pl. de la Virgen. 10.30am Sun | Traslado The Virgin is carried above the flower-throwing, excited crowds and heads backwards into the Cathedral. Sun | Ceramics Escuraeta market begins in Pl. de la Reina. 6.30/7pm Sun | A flowery procession with costumes and candles in the historic centre of El Carmen.

Don't miss| The Virgin's move to the Cathedral on 13/05. Prepare for the crowds!

National holidays mean fewer buses, and most shops, banks & supermarkets close.

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his month is a flower festival spectacle. Below are the main celebrations to look out for and join in with.

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Holidays and parties

In the community & neighbouring towns - Alicante (A), Castellon (C), Valencia (V) April

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17 & 18| Bolbaite (V) Cristo Del Amparo & San Isidro Labrador 19| Alicante (A) Santa Faz, Cocentaina (A) 20| Cullera (V) 23| Onil (A) 23 & 24| Alcoy (A), Banyeres De Mariola (A) 30| Lorcha (A), Alcudia De Veo (C), Caudiel (C), Cheste (V) Virgen De La Soledad

15| Villagordo Del Cabriel (V), Venta Del Moro (V), Utiel (V), Sinarcas (V) 2 & 3| Domeño (V), 3| Jávea (A) Santa Cruz 14 & 15| Muro De Alcoy (A) La Virgen De Los Desamparados, 15| Camporrobles (V) San Isidro Labrador Courtesy of www.docv.gva.es All information correct at time of print. Check with the local tourist information when making plans.

20/04/1881 The Ku Klux Klan Act comes into force and authorises President Ulysses S. Grant to declare martial law, impose heavy penalties and use military force to suppress terrorist organisations.


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Valencia Community | Carcaixent

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arcaixent is one of the most important and attractive towns in the area known as the Ribera Alta – at least that’s what their publicity says, and who am I to argue. I have to admit, though, that it’s not a bad little place. Last time I went the town was quite easy to get into but now the road diverts you past a great big shopping mall called Ribera del Xuquer and then you have to drive around a one-way system to get into the town. The town has some architectural gems that are unfortunately not open to the casual visitor, although given a couple of days notice the tourist office will arrange a private guided tour. Even so, it is a pleasant little town with enough to see for a short and entertaining visit. The 18th century Palacio de la Marquesa (part of the Town Hall) was originally the home of gentry involved in the silk trade, and has a gloriously tiled kitchen in the neoclassical Valenciana style that was added during a 19th century restoration.

Carcaixent fact file Population | 21,973 (2008) Km to Valencia | 48km Point of interest | Magatzem de Ribera Real Acequi And nearby | Simat de Valldigna: Monastario de Santa Maria Fiestas | 12 November Useful information | Centro de Promocón Económica, Pl. Major, 1 (2' floor) 96 245 76 58 promociovalencia@ayto-carcaixent.es

The two main modernista buildings in the town, the Real Acequi and the Magatzem de Ribera, represent the wealth of the community. The former, built in 1927, controlled the flow of water in the area, in both the literal and legal sense, while the latter, designed in 1910 by José Ríos Chiesta, is the most ornate orange warehouse you could imagine, although no longer used for that purpose. What appear to be beautiful wooden beams in the Real Acequi are actually painted steel-reinforced cement, the first of this kind to be used in the Valencian Community. Anyone old enough to remember ‘Dolly Blue’, the deep blue cleaner that for some reason made clothes white, will recognise the colour in the painted ceiling, because a Spanish version was used to tint the paint. The flight of steps up to the first floor was to raise the building above flood level, something it has in common with the more wealthy houses in the town. The water court still meets every week to deal with any disputes and to allocate water supplies to the farmers during the dry summer months. They gather around a heavily carved table sitting in equally grand armchairs, although quite why there was a television plonked in the centre when I was there, the guide couldn’t really explain. Perhaps there had been a dearth of water complaints and they had decided to watch the football instead.

21/04/1980 Rosie Ruiz finishes first in the women’s race in the Boston Marathon. 8 days later Ruiz is stripped of her victory after race officials learned she jumped into the race about a mile before the finish line.


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Car | A35/CV50 Valencia to Alzira, CV41 from Alzira to Xativa Bus | Autobuses Buñol www.bunyol.com Train | Every 20 mins, Valencia Nord, 35 mins www.renfe.com

Without being part of a guided tour all you see of the Magatzem de Ribera is a decorative brick façade and a small garden, but it’s worth walking there just to nip into the restaurant beside it, the Salón Royal 1915. It takes its name from the date the house was built on, so one of the owners was determined that I clearly understood, what was the first and most important street in the town. The façade is beautifully restored, but it’s the bar that draws you in. Camp as a row of tents, the outrageously kitsch decoration of gaudily painted pillars, bunches of flowers and fruit that never saw such glorious colours in real life and cheerful cherubs is wonderful. It looks as if it was done when the building went up but the decoration is only four years old. The restaurant is elegantly low key after this display of decorative boisterousness. The Iglesia Parroquia de Nuestra Señora de la Ascunción (15-18th century), with its sparkling blue, white and bronze tiled cupola, is stunning and each of its side chapels is worthy of being a church on its own. You can even light a real candle, a rarity in these days of coin-fed electric fakes. Wandering down Calle Julian Ribera you come across an ochre painted cafeteria above which the town band practices, (also on the aptly named Passatge del Musical). It’s a barn of a place inside and worth a glance into to see how little changes in small town Spain. Its interior has barely been touched since Edwardian times except for a few battered Formica-topped tables. You can stock up for a picnic at the Mercado Municipal at the bottom of Calle del Pare Marechena, a big, bright open market with all the stalls occupied (unusual these days) and as much a place for locals to meet and chat as a place to do the shopping. Derek Workman To discover more about Spain, visit www.derekworkman-journalist.com & www.derekworkman.wordpress.com

22/04/1886 Ohio passes a law making seduction unlawful for all men over the age of 18 who worked as teachers or instructors of women of any age - including when the seduction was consensual. The penalty - 2 to 10 years in prison.

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l Atelier, a small hair salon and boutique, not only offers Valencia locals an intimate hair salon, but also vintage clothing that won’t break the bank.

Opened on February 14th, 2011, this retro glamour meets modern beauty shop was the brain-child of owners, Fabiano and Valero. Together, they look to source wearable vintage threads (that means no fancy dress prom dresses) from across Europe and within Valencia. Considering they make regular visits to London and Paris to handpick their women's and menswear, it’s quite surprising that prices remain reasonable with almost all pieces (including coats and shoes) coming in under 100 euros. I have to admit, when I first discovered the shop (via Facebook) it was more for the hair services than for the vintage pieces they sell. But I was pleasantly surprised when I entered and saw such an array of clothes, shoes, handbags and hand-crafted jewellery, thoughtfully displayed within a full-service hair salon. After years of styling models and celebrities in London, Sao Paulo native Fabiano, brought his brand of precise, sophisticated snipping to Valencia (Valero’s hometown). Not able to handle the dreary London weather any longer, the duo made the move here two years ago and immediately wanted to open a shop. “We wanted to open something with a Soho/Boho style. Our inspiration came from (the shop) Liberty in London ”, Fabiano explained.

Haircut/blowdry €28 Color €26+ Highlights €30+

Makeup applications €25+

Located on a quiet street in the Abastos neighbourhood, El Atelier boasts an open floor plan made up of a large common area, a quintessential Spanish terrace and a quaint, two-chair parlour. The gleaming wood floors paired with exposed-brick walls adorned by old record albums, make this an über-inviting space. “We really wanted to create a warm and welcoming environment that wasn’t black and white but that had some character. We also wanted a space where the latest trends in hairstyling could unite with art and accessories.” Unlike many thrift stores, El Atelier’s regular influx of fashion-savvy patrons makes affordable designer finds a fairly common occurrence; recent scores included a pair of Helmut Lang pumps and chic Chanel pants. In addition to the trove of inexpensive, gently used fashion, this sleek boutique salon offers a large selection of jewellery, a majority of which has been made by Valero himself. One glass case is even dedicated to his Disney-inspired pieces taken from 1940s picture books. By the way, no one piece is the same. Let’s get back to hair because, after all, that’s why I was there. It was clear that Fabiano is the stylist and Valero is the designer but both are always there and happy to help any customer that walks in. I was greeted and offered a drink by Valero and shortly thereafter seated in Fabiano’s chair to discuss the sad state of my hair. Chit-chatting away, I learned that Fabiano graduated from the acclaimed Vidal Sassoon and L’Oreal Academies. I was impressed by the thoroughness shown in styling my hair. It was obvious that Fabiano is very passionate about his work and the needs of his clients. An hour later, the magic had been completed and I looked (and felt) like a completely different person. I must say, it was the best haircut I’ve had after living in Spain for three years. I thanked Fabiano and Valero profusely and happily made my way back home, knowing that I would soon be back – but next time for a shopping spree. Heather Dillon

23/04/1969. After shooting and killing Robert 'brother of JFK' Kennedy the previous year, Sirhan Sirhan is sentenced to death. Later commuted to life imprisonment he claims the killing was for Kennedy's support of Israel.


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s international people, many are choosing to live an international lifestyle - travel abroad, make exotic friends, and work in other countries. Valencia is crammed with more locations than ever to learn and practice new languages, with different styles of events to choose from. Take your pick from easy going chats to more formal affairs and take into consideration that some have a small fee, work in association with language schools, and/or offer free drinks or snacks. Try a few to see what suits you best, and above all, have fun!

24/04/1916 Nationalists launch the Easter Rising in Dublin, seizing buildings such as the main Post Office and declare Irish freedom from the UK. Rebel leader Éamon de Valera went on to become the new Republic's President 3 times.


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was recently invited to teach a creative writing workshop at the American School of Valencia as part of their Arts Day. Considering I was competing with Garage Band and a guy who makes musical instruments from vacuum cleaner tubes and other household scrap, I was initially just happy to see anyone show up. The bright ground-floor classroom was about evenly divided, a row of boys by the window and a balancing row of girls at the wall. The invisible wall down the middle would have made Hadrian himself proud. I launched into warm up questions and technical pointers. I was planning to progress to group activities then gradually reduce the group sizes until I had set them free to work alone, inspired and free to wander the fertile meadows of their imaginations with me as their friendly guide. About thirty seconds into the first group activity I was cursing my stupidity. I was losing them and in danger of getting stonewalled. I quickly abandoned Plan A and went to divide and conquer, hoping that I could salvage things enough to persuade the school that I wasn’t some charlatan to be banished from their midst. What happened next was a bit special. I had of course massively underestimated their desire and capacity to write and express themselves. The exercise was to describe

a space from their childhood. They were to use all five senses and stick to showing the space to the reader without explaining anything about it. Very quickly, blank pages began to fill up, and I was soon moving from desk to desk digging through hand writing almost as bad as my own. The group was pretty evenly split between home grown Spanish kids and International students and with very little interaction the style of narratives began to fall into matching categories. The Spanish kids for the most part stuck close to home and were much quicker to express the desire to move on to tell a story. The International kids dived back to places left behind. The descriptions were immediately evocative, fragrant, full of colour and tangible emotion. "The room filled with aromatic home cooking, wafts of cigarette smoke drifted up hallways and lingered in the fabric of sofas. Hands slid over cornhusks, smooth then surprisingly sticky. Laughing children played around rough wooden benches in parks, fell over fat dogs and were stalked by skinny cats. Sand, grass, and gravel rubbed against bare skin." One boy effortlessly evoked the boredom of youth that is only ever felt in a place where you feel completely comfortable and safe. One of the girls defied everything I had suggested about structure and technique and remarkably in just two drafts produced a five-part prose poem. The writing was so full of melancholic images and longing that it seemed to come from much older souls. This I realised was the rub. These kids, young as they were, had already lived the emigrant experience. They could genuinely tap into the universal themes, draw from the emotion of separation, and loss, feed off the experience of being immersed in a new country, a new language, a multicultural environment and starting again. They wrote of what was left behind with a perspective and ability unavailable to those who have never had to leave. Eoghan Ryan

25/04/1980 A Dan-Air Boeing 727 carrying British tourists to Tenerife crashes and kills all 146 on board. This terrible crash came just three years after another even deadlier accident at the Canary Islands airport.


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ost Easter almost always marks a slump in a teaching diary. The students are tired, so is the teacher. Let’s face it, you’ve known each other for six months now, maybe longer. There’s no need to set up activities any more because they know exactly what you want them to do and you’ve become boring and predictable. They’ve got exams and summer is just around the corner, and you need to keep them engaged for the final lap. These are some ways to focus students after the Easter break: one Dealing with grammar (again) “We did the present perfect last week.” A cry that you’ll hear in staff rooms the world over, but does it mean that they understand it just because you did classes on it? Time to go back over those difficult tenses by asking a series of questions that elicit the grammar that you’re looking for. Get them in pairs to answer the questions and then ask the brave ones for an answer. Make sure everyone gets to answer the questions and cover a variety of grammar to see

two Revision Time to bring up all of that vocabulary again rather than simply start off with new things that they haven’t seen before. There are a number of ways to present grammar that they already know and vocabulary that they’ve already seen. How about some pelmanism games to revise their vocabulary – get them doing something with their hands? I tend to use www. puzzle-maker.com/WS/ index.htm a lot in order to put together crosswords for children. There are plenty more if you search for them using Google. It needs to be something familiar so they can sense that they are a bit more clued up than they were back in September.

three Varying Activities So you’ve been doing the same reading exercise for the last six months, have you? Maybe you’ve just been following the course book blow by blow in a very dry kind of delivery? (God help you if you have.) Why not turn these activities into speaking or listening activities? Most course books give you that option by providing a spoken version of the text, which can be turned into a gap fill easily enough. Just try to take a step back from your classes for a moment and ask yourself “Is there another way I can do this that’s different from before?” Being self-critical often has its benefits. Look at your students’ faces. Are they bored? Looking at the ceiling? Try to bring things alive or do them another way. Even if it doesn’t work, at least you tried something new.

For those of you who really want to get down to learning the language, we'll be bringing you an expression each month. This is our job. Your job? Get out there and use it! Then tell us how you got on... jugar el cuello - bet one’s neck on it e.g. Andy estará ahí mañana. Me jugaría el cuello. - Andy will be there tomorrow. I’d bet my neck on it.

what they need to work on. You’ll find that the further away from talking about themselves that you get, and the more abstract the tense is, the more difficult it will be for them to use it as it does not come into play in the classroom. Compare present simple with I & you with he and she and you’ll see where they (still) trip up. Just as ‘be going to’ is much easier to fathom than ‘will have + past participle.’ Then plan a class in order to work on this. The more abstract/ unused the tense, the more reason to work on it before exam time.

four Personalisation What did they do during the holidays? Probably nothing or, they just don’t want to talk about it in front of the class. Get them to talk about it in pairs and then have them talk about what their partner did. This helps them use those subject pronouns that they don’t normally use and means they have already used the target language in private before using it in front of the class. You could get them to guess what you did during the holidays, give them a mixture of true and false or just let them ask whatever they want, depending on how private a person you are. I would always do something like this after the holidays rather than dive straight back into the book. Mix it up a bit, a bit of the book and a bit of something fun to ease them back into the final semester.

five Homework Try to keep moving forward through the book whilst keeping one eye on what you have already done and what they need to know for the exams/ following year. How do you maintain this balance? Well, give them homework for stuff that they have already studied rather than what you’ve just done in class. My new ‘Voices’ book has an excellent ‘cumulative grammar’ section that combines grammar they have just learnt with stuff they have been learning throughout the year. Try to get them thinking about this by doing things that require looking back on what you have already done.

Orange Language Academy has been an American run language school for the city of Valencia and its provinces since 2005 offering all types of language related services. They run language exchanges at The Bohemian Café (Mons), Portland Ale House (Tues & Weds) and Sherlock Holmes* (Thurs).*new www.orangeidiomas.com

26/04/1986. Reactor #4 of the power plant in Chernobyl goes into meltdown and the resulting explosion means the entire 150,000 population of Pripyat has to be evacuated. Estimated time for a safe return is 150 years from now.


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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19

17 La Galeria, C/ Baja, 38 KandABooks, C/ Tapineria, 18 Plou i fa sol, Pl. del Músico López Chavarri, 7b La Strada, C/ Quart, 17 Lenguas Vivas, C/ Palleter, 43 Il Genovino, Campoamor, 50 Rostro, Calle Quart, 13 Portland Ale House, C/ Salamanca, 10 Troppo Bene, Avda. del Puerto, 87 British Foods.es, Central Market Gusto Nuovo, Av/ Reino de Valencia, 9 Orange Language Academy, C/ Santo Domingo Savio, 68 Kiss My Feet, C/ San Valero, 1 Mad Hatter's Coffee Lounge, C/ Serrano Morales, 3 Anita Giro, Pintor Domingo, 7 Dhaba, Plz.Don Juan de Villarrasa, 6 British Council, Av. de Cataluña, 9 Taste Of America, Av Reino de Valenica, 6 Vesuvio, C/ Beato Nicolás Factor, 8

t e country's first bllack President. 27 years of his lif th ife e had been spent in n pr p ison n cells including g 18 on n Rob obbe b n Island. be


Music

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very month we review the best new music out there and try to keep you up-to-date with those important goings on in the music world. Here's the selection of albums that impressed us this month. If you have heard something amazing, let us know what it is, or write a review and send it to us.

Album For Indie Fans | Port Of Morrow – The Shins The fourth studio album from James Mercer et al. in five years has received mixed reviews from the world’s music critics. From the opening chords on the first track there is an unmistakable Shinlike feel to the album and arguably not a major departure away from what has come before. A long time in the making (Mercer has been sidetracked by a project with DJ Danger Mouse called Broken Bells), it could be that people were expecting something a little more. Despite this distraction, we’ve got probably one of the most well produced albums of the year so far. Layers upon layers of guitar, wonderfully arranged strings and samples litter the album throughout and make for rather pleasant listening. Standout Tracks: Simple Song, September, No Way Down Album To Headbang To | Open Your Heart – The Men The Men have released an incredibly haunting album this time round, managing to mix the quiet melancholy with occasional punches of loud garage rock. Almost akin to Battles by being without vocals for most of the album, The Men expose themselves for the world to see warts and all. Feedback, guitar effects, bum notes and throat-clearing all audible in between tracks, it really wears its heart on its sleeve. Strongly guitar driven and reminiscent of the old punk days before The Clash went reggae, The Ramones played their guitars as low as they could and Sid Vicious was at his offensive best. However, be prepared for those quiet, acoustic numbers that crop up in between and offer a certain degree of depth to the end product. Standout Tracks: Animal, Candy, Ex Dreams Album To Fill The Dancefloors | Visions – Grimes Very much in the same vein as La Roux, Grimes’ third album boasts some pretty amazing tunes as well as holding it all together as an album. Think Lykke Li crossed with Blade Runner and what you’ve got is a good idea of what Grimes’ sound is all about. Claire Boucher mixes human emotion with technology, layers and layers of her voice mixed with electronic drum beats and keyboard sounds. Her voice is disguised by reverb, tweaked, distorted, but remains an ever-present falsetto throughout the songs. Ambient, playful and occasionally dissonant in its structure, Visions shows an incredible leap forward for the artist and will certainly leave the listener to wonder what on earth she will do next. Standout Tracks: Infinite “heart” Without Fulfilment, Vowels = Space and Time, Skin Other releases | Paul Weller, Madonna, Plan B, The Wedding Present, Iron Maiden, The Mars Volta and many, many more. Music news | Bob Dylan has been announced as a headliner at FIB Benicassim 2012. He will top the already impressive line up, which includes The Stone Roses, New Order, Florence & The Machine and Noel Gallagher.

M83, Marianne Faithful & Wild Beasts meanwhile have been added to the ever-growing Primavera Sound list, which already includes Björk, The Cure & Franz Ferdinand.

Robbie Williams has put in a £15m offer for the Beverly Hills mansion In timing with the release of a new where Michael Jackson died. Maybe album, former Guns N’ Roses guitarist some of that musical genius will rub Slash has claimed that music has "lost off on him? its magic". ‘Apocalyptic Love’ will be released on 21 May and is sure to set the world of music straight.

Smashing Pumpkins will release new album ‘Oceania’ on June 18. Songwriter Billy Corgan has called it an "album within an album". Sweet! The Flaming Lips are going to use the blood of a number of contributors from their latest album at a record launch. The packaging of some limited edition (thank God!) copies of ‘The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends’ will include the blood of artists such as Ke$ha, Bon Iver, Nick Cave, Neon Indian and Erykah Badu.

28/04/1945 Benito Mussolini is caught trying to escape Italy and is arrested and killed at the Swiss border. His body was taken to Milan and hung upside down at a petrol station to allow everyone to see he was dead.


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Live events

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very month we pick out the best live music in and around the Valencian Community for those of you who want to get out and enjoy music as it should be heard. If we hear of anything else coming up, we'll Facebook it.

Dub Club| Calle Jesus 91, (VLC) Dub Club's motto is 'to play music and not noise'. And if you like reggae and ska then you will agree. www.myspace.com/dubclubvalencia

29/5 Lenny Kravitz Velódromo Luis Puig €45-145 Time TBC www.goo.gl/RjpQc 21/06 Madonna - Barcelona's Palau Sant Jordi. 2nd night tickets available. €95 www.ticketmaster.es May & June - Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band play across Spain - but they're not coming to VLC! €65+ www.ticketmaster.es

Sala El Loco| C/ Erudito Orellana, 12 (VLC) 20/04 Daniel Johnston. His truly madcap life was captured in the 2006 documentary The Devil and Daniel Johnston. Says it all. €18/25 26/04 Doctor Feelgood. Pub rockers around since 1971. €15/18 28/04 The Smokin Stones. Homage to The Rolling Stones from Barcelona. €12/15 08/05 Chuck Prophet. American singersongwriter. €15/€18 15/05 Richard Buckner. American alternative country. €10/13 www.lococlub.org Sala Wah Wah| C/ Campoamor, 58 (VLC) Great venue with a lot of local and international acts visiting. 20/04 Depredro. Soul, funk and rock'n'roll. €10 27&28/04 Ivan Ferreiro plays an intimate double header. €15/18 11/05 La Habitación Roja. Spanish indie pop. €12/15 www.wahwahclub.com Sala Mirror| San Vicente Martir, 200 (VLC) Dance music lovers and DJs. www.discomirror.es

LA3| C/ del Padre Porta, 4 (VLC) The best dance music and coolest DJs. Fri and Sat nights. www.la3club.com

Excuse me| C/Tomasos 14 (VLC) Two floors with the usual eclectic mix to keep the dancefloors moving. Pop Club Deluxe| C/ Poeta Mas y Ros, 42 (VLC) Pop Club Deluxe - Intimate

Sala Matisse| C/ Campoamor, 60 setting for live music. (VLC) Lots of great local and national music. 21/04 Mañana €8/10 26/04 Xoel López €15 www.salamatisse.es

Mya| Popular dance club down at the Arts and Sciences buildings.

La Caverna| C/ Cuenca, 70 (VLC) A very cosy venue with mad gigs!

Xtra Large Playground| Av Germanias 21. New buzzing dancefloor in Ruzafa.

Ubik| C/ Literato Azorín, 13 (VLC) Book readings, films, intercambios and music.

Festival information Low Cost Festival| Alicante 27-29/7

El Palau de la Musica| (VLC) Beautiful classical music but not always open to non-members. 9/04 Lang Lang (piano) €30-60, Hilary Hahn and Cory Smythe (violin and piano) €25, Peter Pan musical 21/04 €3/6 & 11/05 The Budapest Festival Orchestra €25-50 www.palaudevalencia.com

Durango| C/ Llanterners 35, Poligono Jimmy Glass| C/ Baja, 28 (VLC) 19/04 Arthur Kell Quartet €14 20/04 Piano Duo €4 24/04 Fly €18 27/04 Piano Trio €4 www.jimmyglassjazz.net Black Note Valencia| Calle Polo y Peyrolon, 15 (VLC) Jazz, blues, r&b, soul, funk, acid jazz, swing and latino sounds. Mon - Jam sessions, Tues - house band 2 Animales with their blues/acoustic rock sounds, Weds - reggae. 18/04 LA Gang Band 20/04 Nasty Boogie 26/04 Relevo de Plata and 27/04 Arcana www.blacknoteclub.com Café Mercedes| C/ Sueca, 27 (VLC) A nice, cheap jazz venue in the heart of Ruzafa with free jam sessions on Sundays from 8:30pm. www.cafemercedes.es

La Closa (Meliana) Heavier rock club with plenty on Fris & Sats. www.durangoclub.es Rock City| Tavernes Blancas. Heavier rock club. 27/04 Cloverace from Barcelona. Punk pop in English and Spanish. 04/05 Control Stone. Rolling Stones tribute from Alicante. www.valenciarockcity.com

Music Box| C/ Pintor Zariñera, 16 (VLC) & Radio City| C/ Santa Teresa 19 (VLC) Open daily with visiting DJs and Tuesdays offer live flamenco music at Radio City 11pm €7 w. free drink. www.radiocityvalencia.com www.myspace.com/themusicboxclub Café del Duende| C/ Turia, 62 (VLC) Great flamenco every Thu, Fri, Sat & Sun. www.cafedelduende.com

€50, VIP €125 Kasabian, Suede. www.lowcostfestival.es Benicassim| 12-15/7 Bob Dylan, Stone Roses, Florence & The Machine, New Order, Noel Gallagher, Dizzee Rascal, David Guetta and De La Soul. Many others. €165 www.fiberfib.com Sonar | Barcelona 14-16/6 2 days €100, 3 days €130 Fatboy Slim, The Roots, Friendly Fires, Deadmau5, Hot Chip, Richie Hawtin, Laurent Garnier and more. €155 www.sonar.es BBK Live | Bilbao 12-14/07 Radiohead, The Cure, Klaxons & Snow Patrol. 3 day incl camping. €105 Primavera Sound | Barcelona 30/5-3/6 Bjork, Death Cab For Cutie, Rufus Wainwright, Justice, The Cure, Beirut, Wilco & Franz Ferdinand. €80/190 www.primaverasound.com Arenal sound | Burriana 2-5/8 Two Door Cinema Club, The Kaiser Chiefs, Love of Lesbian & The Wombats. €30 www.arenalsound.com Azkena Music Festival | Bilbao 2325/06 Black Sabbath, Lynyrd Skynrd, Blue Oyster Cult, The Dropkick Murphy's. €102 www.azkenarockfestival.com Rototom Sunsplash | Benicassim 16-22/08 All things reggae-tinged. €60/2 days, €150/ full week! www.rototom.com

29/04/2011 Prince William weds Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey in London. 1,900 guests attend, 1 million line the streets of London and 2 billion watch on TV. Most men only seem to take notice when Kate's sister is on the screen.


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Sport

© Valencia Basket

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alencia Basketball Club | Following Valencia Club de Baskets's appearance in the last 4 of the Euro Cup playoffs in Russia on 14/15 May, the end of season playoffs will start on 17 May so every game this month takes on ever increasing significance. Buy tickets online or at the Pabellon Fuente de San Luis on the day of the game. www.valenciabasket.com Valencia Basketball Club fixtures | *Dates to be confirmed 18/04 - 8.45pm Baloncesto Fuenlabrada v Valencia 22/04 - 12.30pm Valencia v Gescrap Bizkaia 26/04 - 9.45pm Cajasol Banca Civica v Valencia 29/04 - 12:30pm Valencia v Gran Canaria 2-3/05 Obradoiro CAB v Valencia * 5-6/05 Valencia v Blancos de Rueda Vallodolid *

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t's your turn | Bernie Ecclestone has confirmed that from 2013 Barcelona and Valencia will alternate the Spanish Grand Prix."The recession means that both cities are in need of this type of cooperation and it's a case of finding a way to help Valencia and, if by alternating the event with Barcelona, we can help, then that's a good solution", said the F1 Boss. Barcelona will host this year's Spanish Grand Prix on 13 May with Valencia hosting the European Grand Prix on 24 June. Ecclestone confirmed that Mayor Rita Barberá wanted Valencia to continue hosting the European Grand Prix and made her position very clear in a meeting with him last year. This change to the F1 calendar opens the door for New York to join the tour from 2013.

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ootball tickets | An exciting month ahead as the football season comes to its conclusion. Valencia have a Europa League semi-final clash with Atletico Madrid and a win will take them to the 9 May final at the National Stadium in Bucharest. They are also fighting pretty much neck and neck with Levante in La Liga for one of the coveted Champions League spots. Buy tickets for Valencia at the kiosks at the Mestalla on Avenida de Suecia, on their web page, on ticketmaster.es, at any of the official Valencia football shops, or even from the La Caixa website. Just ask for una entrada. The seats at Grada de la Mar are cheap and have a good view. Get your tickets for the Levante games at the football stadium on the day. www.valenciacf.com www.levanteud.com Valencia fixtures | 15/04 RCD Espanyol v Valencia CF La Liga 19/04 Atletico Madrid v Valencia CF Ch. League 22/04 Valencia CF v Real Betis La Liga 26/04 Valencia CF v Atletico Madrid Ch. League 29/04 Málaga CF v Valencia CF La Liga 03/05 Valencia CF v Osasuna La Liga 06/05 Valencia CF v Villarreal CF La Liga 13/05 Real Sociedad v Valencia CF La Liga Levante fixtures | All games - La Liga ** 22/04 Sevilla FC v Levante UD 29/04 Levante UD v Granada CF 02/05 Real Zaragoza v Levante UD 06/05 RCD Mallorca v Levante UD 13/05 Levante UD v Athletic Club ** Fixture dates are not cast in stone - check local papers/ internet for more information nearer the time.

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ad advice? | Spanish motorbike rider, Dani Pedrosa, has been indicted on a charge of cheating in his exams to qualify as a yacht captain. 21 people were arrested and 10 were detained at the Polytechnic University in Valencia on 31 March including the star name of Pedrosa who is accused of using an earpiece in the exam. Pedrosa who now rides in the Moto GP World Championships was the 250cc World Motorbike Champion in 2004 and 2005. Pedrosa has made a public statement of apology admitting his error after following some bad advice.

30/04/1993 Tennis star Monica Seles is stabbed during a match in Hamburg. The attacker, a fan of rival tennis star Steffi Graf, said that he hoped that by injuring Seles his idol Graf would be able to regain her No. 1 tennis ranking.


Cinema

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very month inVLC brings you the best that cinema has to offer in Valencia. This month we’ve got a variety of Versión Original films for you to enjoy.

Mirror Mirror | (Tarsem Singh, 2012) Julia Roberts, Lily Collins, Armie Hammer A different take on Snow White & the Seven Dwarves sees exiled princess Snow White (Collins) recruiting a group of seven rebels after an Evil Queen (Roberts) takes control of her kingdom. Tarsem Singh previously worked on films such as The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) and The Immortals (2011), which have both been big box office draws. Expect Roberts hamming it up as the Evil Queen, Lily Collins looking adorable and even some eye candy for the ladies in the form of Armie Hammer (J. Edgar, 2012). The biggest talking point so far has been Roberts’ transformation into a hag before the end of the film. Yelmo - 17:45, 20:00 & 22:15

We Need To Talk About Kevin | (Lynne Ramsey, 2012) Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra Miller Lionel Shriver’s successful 2003 novel finally gets the celluloid treatment with an impressive cast to boot. Eva (Swinton) has become estranged from her husband Franklin (Reilly) after a high school massacre committed by her son Kevin (Miller). The film deals with Eva’s attempts to try to come to terms with what her son has done and, more importantly, whether she was to blame through displaying such indifference to maternity. Director Ramsey was responsible for the faithful adaptation of The Lovely Bones (2009), so expect well-handled another adaptation of another dark, yet enthralling exploration of those things that parents fear most for their children. Promises to be an uncomfortable watch all round. Yelmo - 22:30 Keep yourself up-to-date with the latest films by liking us on Facebook.

The Ides of March | (George Clooney, 2012) Paul Giamatti, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ryan Gosling I have to admit that, following four directorial credits for George Clooney (most notably Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, 2002 and Good Night, Good Luck, 2005), I was rather looking forward to his fifth. Stephen Meyers (Gosling) is a young staffer working for a presidential candidate Governor Mike Morris (Clooney) in the run up to the next elections. Working alongside the unscrupulous Paul Zara (Hoffman) and against the formidable Tom Duffy (Giamatti), Meyers suddenly becomes aware of a dirty secret that the governor has been trying to keep away from the press that sickens him to his very core. An interesting look at the dirty politics that exists under the glossy surface and the choices that those involved are forced to make in order to survive. Babel - 16:30, 18:30, 20:40 & 22:45 Kinepolis - 19:00

The Intouchables | (Oliver Nakache, 2011) François Cluzet, Omar Sy, Anne Le Ny Not to be confused with the Connery/ De Niro/ Costner film from 80s about Al Capone, Eliot Ness and Prohibition, but a French film that is already able to boast being the second biggest grossing French film in history behind Welcome To The Sticks (Dany Boon, 2008). Two men from completely different backgrounds are thrown together in unlikely circumstances – Philippe (Cluzet) is an aristocrat made paraplegic after a paragliding accident and Driss (Sy) is from the projects. Whilst deemed ‘offensive’ for its Uncle Tom racism by US magazine Vanity Fair, this hasn’t stopped The Weinstein Company buying the rights for an English language remake. The plot of the film has apparently been inspired by a true story and was the subject of a documentary film in 2004. Babel - 16:30, 18:40, 20:45 & 22:45 Kinepolis - 18:00, 20:30 & 22:45 Yelmo- 17:40 & 20:10

Filmoteca, Pl. del Ayuntamiento, 17 www.filmoteca.es Yelmo Cines, Av. Tirso de Molina, 16, www.yelmocines.es Kinepolis, Av. de Francisco Tomás y Valiente, Paterna www.kinepolis.es Babel, C/ Vicente Sancho Tello, 10, www.cinesalbatrosbabel.com

02/05/1808 Napoleon's invasion of Spain sees a Spanish fightback in and around Madrid's main square. The Spanish were defeated and as a response to the uprising the French army rounded up and shot hundreds of madrileños.

Intermediate

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Read me | Johnathon Franzen

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reedom - With the release of The Corrections in 2001, Johnathon Franzen found himself propelled to the literary forefront as one of America’s most important novelists. His new novel Freedom, published in the US in August 2010, has just been released in the UK and looks set to further cement his reputation.

The story centres round a supposedly quintessential liberal American family called the Berglunds. Walter and Patty Berglund meet at university and despite Patty’s fascination with Walter’s punk-rocker roommate Richard Katz, she ends up falling in love with and eventually marrying Walter after an accident that puts a premature end to her basketball career. They have a daughter (Jessica) and a son (Joey), who has fallen in love with and is having a sexual relationship with the neighbour’s daughter Connie. Patty is not happy when she finds out about this and seems content on hating Connie no matter what, expecting much better for her beloved son. Walter on the other hand seems more concerned about Joey’s increasingly Republican tendencies, which are completely contrary to Walter’s liberal views and environmental worries.

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inheritance of a relative’s fortune, knowing that you have made the same mistakes as your parents or realise you have made entirely new ones altogether – Franzen covers it all. Not a single stone is left unturned throughout the novel and Franzen paints a very broad picture of American society, taking in every detail, every landscape. He not only brings these places to life – the motel where Walter lived and worked as a boy, the allure of the bright lights of New York City, the Washington DC suburbs, the beautiful West Virginian countryside under threat from constructors – but populates them with vividly drawn characters that breathe life into every page.

At no point did the book seem like a long slog nor did I feel as though I were wading through the prose to get to the good bits. Sadly this can often be the case with novels of such a size and thankfully Franzen manages to make it an easy read. I can’t imagine this being an easy task for the author whose There is a lot going on in subject matter is so all this novel and, given the encompassing yet I believe time and the space, I could his success lies in adopting write a lot more (the book clocks in at 576 pages). a number of different I found The Corrections viewpoints and voices a fascinating read and throughout the novel. A remember being impressed particularly dense passage by the way Franzen portrays living in a family and the oftenabout Patty’s inner worries might be contrasted with the loveable rogue Richard about to undertake another of difficult relationships that we have with those that belong his diabolical schemes. Or Joey’s inner struggle between to it. Freedom takes it one step further allowing us to not accepting Connie’s unquestionable devotion only see the family from within and from It's doubtful that to him or whether there’s still time for him to the viewpoint of its individual members, play the field with other women – turned on but also the perception of the Berglunds anyone with an its head by Connie willing to let him do what from the outside. The novel introduces internet connection he wants, which makes him second guess. It’s us to the Berglunds through the eyes of at his workplace is this mix that gives Freedom its readability and a nosy neighbour and, indeed, the final writing good fiction. provides the reader with a wonderful cast of part of the book also has us looking at them again from the outside after Johnathon Franzen well-rounded characters complete with all of their charming qualities and not-so-charming getting to know them throughout the foibles. And charming or not, they stay with you long after book. The disappointment of a child’s choice for a partner, you’ve finished the final page, which is an admirable feat. the neglect of one sibling in favour of the other, the

Bikes| The monthly bike meeting of VLC will take place as usual on the first Friday of the month. This aims to promote bikes and bike safety in VLC. Place| Plaza de la Virgin, VLC Time| 7.30pm 03/05/1990 A prisoner is finally executed in Florida after his electric chair malfunctions 3 times causing flames to leap from his head. Many states then adopted lethal injection for capital punishment. Death row inmates didn't rejoice much.


Your photos | Reflection

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ach month we’ll give you a topic for the following edition. Email us 1 high-resolution image with a sentence describing the photo by 31st of the month. We’ll choose a few entries to print and the editor's favourite wins a prize. This month's favourite is by Stuart! Please send 1 photo per person & only send your own photo for copyright reasons. There are other terms and conditions - email us for them. Next month’s topic is 'sweet’. Look forward to seeing your pictures. invlceditor@gmail.com

Hartley Spencer | Car park

Declan Lehane | On route

Miryam Shemwell | Classic

WINNER!

Isabel Rubio Gil | Handcrafted Stuart Atkinson | El lago azul 05/05/1821 English arch rival the Duke Of Wellington was once asked who was the greatest general of the day. He answered "In this age, in past ages, in any age, Napoleon" who died this day as a prisoner of Wellington on the island of St Helena.


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Green living | The big picturre

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his month I'm going to tackle one of the 'big' themes and as it's a 'big' theme, I'm going to define the problem this month and next month I'll propose some alternatives. The state of the economy and economics in general are as important to Greens as they are for anybody else. The way the world is run has a very big effect on the planet, the quality of the environment and on our lives.

One of the fundamental parts of capitalist economic theory and practice is 'growth'. Every country wants to get back to a rate of 2% or 3% per cent annual growth in order to create jobs, increase profits, pay back debts, reduce deficit, etc. Every state's goal appears to be to grow themselves out of this current crisis and get back to the good old days of 10 years ago but to put it bluntly, this just isn't going to happen. Maybe this was possible 30 or so years ago but it is now completely unsustainable for reasons I will go into soon. Those reasons apart (for the moment) there is nothing in the natural order of things that grows and grows and grows. The nearest thing that I can think of that has infinite growth is cancer and that will grow until it eventually kills the organism which in turn leads to it killing itself. Below are some key reasons why our economic system can't go on its merry way of infinite growth. I believe that it's only a question of time before it will collapse completely if we don't choose a sustainable economic system before then. one Continuous growth is causing greater and greater inequalities in the world. The wealth of the planet isn't trickling down to the less well off; it is being sucked up by the wealthy. "20% of the population has 76% of the wealth and another 20% has only 2% of the global income". The following may be difficult to believe but over 1 billion people on our planet live on less than 1 dollar a day! The question is, who is going to buy all the consumer products that are being produced? How many cookers, cars, iPhones and TVs can the wealthy 20% use? two We need to ask where we are going to get the resources to make the products? The principle energies that are fueling our economic growth are oil, gas, coal, and nuclear power (uranium). Of these, oil and gas stand head and shoulders above the rest and the majority of experts, including those in the oil industry, believe production will peak in this decade (pessimists) or the next (optimists). three Oil is the energy that is driving our economies and their growth. It won't suddenly come to an end but the price will inexorably increase as sources of oil diminish and production quantities decrease. In a finite world and in an economy of continuous growth, oil is not the only resource that will peak and decline. Richard Heinberg describes in his book "Peak Everything" how all the resources on the planet will have peaks/declines and the faster we use them the sooner those peaks/declines will arrive.

four The capacity of the planet to absorb and deal with the contamination produced by our neverending growth. We are not only contaminating the Earth with waste from oil and coal but we are also overfishing the oceans, cutting down the forests/ rain forests, contaminating the water, reducing the fertility of the land, polluting the air, etc. Ecologist Bill McKibben said "Before we end up without petrol, we'll end up without a planet" but really when these limitations kick in or what combination of them, and to what extent they will affect our economies is not as important as the realisation that the 'infinite growth' party is definitely over. You can find a very good (6min) video called "Who killed economic growth?" by the "Post Carbon Institute" on YouTube which explains the history of economic growth and what new dangers we are facing now. To understand the video no economic expertise is necessary. For these reasons I believe our economics of continuous growth will fail and it will be extremely painful for all concerned unless we change direction soon. I have heard madness defined as "someone who knows he/she is going down the wrong road and redoubles his or her efforts". The vast majority of governments, political parties, and economists are hell bent on continuing down the same road that got us into this mess. Next month I will be proposing some alternatives to this current economic madness from economists who truly understand the situation we have got ourselves into and have realistic ways of getting out of it. Declan Lehane Statistics from "Prosperity Without Growth, Economy For A Finite Planet" by Tim Jackson.

A little goes a long way What| Smile and laugh. Why| You'll reduce blood pressure, stress & feel better. Why not| You worry about wrinkles! Benefits| A healthier body and mind means less medicine. This reduces your chemical intake and the effect of chemical production on the world.

06/05/1937 The Hindenburg disaster occurs when the airship, while attempting to moor in New Jersey, suddenly bursts into flames, falls 200 feet to the ground and is incinerated within seconds. Zeppelin travel rapidly falls out of favour.


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his month I’ll not only give you a recipe for a delicious dish, but for a very good day out as well. We're talking about wild asparagus and Spring is the perfect season for them, especially after a little rain! All you have to do is leave the city and head for the countryside. It's best go to a place with a light kind of soil such as Chulilla. As asparagus like moist conditions, head for a place along a river, stream or reservoir.

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What to buy| (Makes 24 asparagus) Mild tasting olive oil Black pepper A handful (or two) of crushed walnuts A lemon (although I prefer to pluck them right off the tree on the way.) Fresh bread from your village bakery Thin green asparagus if you want to cheat instead of picking them.

When I first heard about the green gold, I kind of crouched down to see if I could spot some little heads sticking out of the soil. Wrong. White asparagus might grow that way, but green wild ones are very different - and not just in taste. Most of the ones you'll see grow as a single stalk to a height of about 30 cm. But don't be surprised if you see them up to 1 metre with small side branches. As for collecting, my neighbour Juan explained the art of snapping to me. Start quite low and bend the stalk lightly. If the stalk doesn't give way immediately, move up a bit and try again and if necessary again. The stalk should snap without you using any force. Break them too low and you'll have tough ends that don't taste right. While collecting keep the asparagus in a little bag or, if it will be a while before you're ready to prepare them, wrap them lightly in a wettish towel. If you're a real dominguero, or a true climbing bum, you now head for your furgoneta (little campervan) to prepare your delicacy. Funny smell? Asparagus are very low in calories but high in fibre and minerals. They are also good for liver and blood and clean your urinary system. That's why your pee will smell a bit funny after eating them.

Wow Factor| Absolutely gorgeous! Effort| A child could do it! How to make it| one Grate the peel of one lemon (preferably organic, because it should be wax free). two Heat a very generous glug of olive oil in a frying pan over a medium flame and add the peel. three Rinse and dry the asparagus. four After a minute add to the pan and fry for another minute, or a bit less if the asparagus are really thin. five Stir and add the crushed walnuts and a few good twists of freshly ground pepper. six Dive in immediately with some fresh bread. Cantina Marina www.cantinamarinacatering.blogspot.com

07/05/1896 Prolific murderer Dr Holmes is hanged after the way he sells human cadavers to medical schools is finally questioned by authorities. He reputedly killed over 200 whom he had abducted during the World Fair in Chicago.

First certificate

Recipe | Green asparagus with lemon & walnuts


Artist of the month | Inma Palmero & Joaquín López

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e want to support new and up-and-coming artistic talent in the Valencian Community. Each month we choose one artist at random and devote a page to that artist. name | Inma Palmero & Joaquín López, Prosperart Cb location | Torrente history | Prosperart started to run in 2004 and both partners, Inma and Joaquín, studied Fine Arts at the University of Valencia and the Artesanos School of Valencia respectively.

what's available | Original paintings on canvas, wood or methacrylate, murals and windows. style | It depends on market trends, always according to home decoration. influences | Velázquez,Klimt, Picasso, Sorolla, Feito, Valdés. prices | paintings from €10 to €300 (Prices agreed for special orders).

phone | 96 108 0158 mobile | 649 968 471 email | prosperart.c.b@hotmail.com studio | Partida Casablanca 115 LL, Torrente, Valencia

If you, or anyone you know, would like to feature in our art pages, contact us at invlceditor@gmail.com


Like 'inVLC' on Facebook for more art to see

Art to see

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" A nice blend of prediction and surprise seem to be at the heart of the best art." (Wendy Carlos, musician) Two for the price of one (IVAM until 6th May) As much as I love the facets which characterise Fauvist and Cubist art, I invariably imagine such works as sober, rebellious in nature and, to some extent, reproachful reflections of ‘those times’. For me, I can’t help but feel a quiet discontent filtering through many a canvas, like a colour unseen to the naked eye, but as much a part of the painting as infrared or ultraviolet is to the colour spectrum. On entering A Free Spirit, a five-decade retrospective of the work of Basque artist Menchu Gal, I once again get that familiar feeling. Although each still life is expertly executed and beautifully proportioned, the strains of colour handpicked by this National Painting Prize winner are indisputably solemn, pushing light, shade and form to the front of the stage where they take a gracious bow for their award winning performance. As I start my ascent to an upper gallery, I can see a myriad of colours and flashes of light abounding with energy and leaping from all sides of the room. Could these landscapes, seascapes, interiors and portraits vying for my attention really have come from the same mind? Yes, indisputably the same artist, unquestionably the same quality but what a departure from what now resided below me. I feel as if I’ve walked out of Hamlet after Act 1 and wandered into Act 2 of Much Ado About Nothing. I offer a personal standing ovation and leave feeling pleased that I’ve managed to catch a double matinee. IVAM, C/ Quevado, Guillem de Castro 118 | 96 386 30 00 | Tues-Sun: 10am-8pm | www.ivam.es | Free!

Smart Nouveau (Centro Cultural Bancaja until 31st July) The seriously fun 1900. El origen del arte publicitario exhibition is an excellent collection of lithographically rendered, early advertising posters which work on different levels. Surely the Mad Men of their time, these advertisers had money to spend and engaged some of the best artists and copy writers of the day to make us want that which we had no idea existed (prior to their seduction). So what were they trying to Sell! Sell! Sell!? Well, everything from common comestibles, books and magazines to less familiar services and pursuits. You too can enjoy the Sport of Kings, suggests one; seek relief from Syphilis, enthuses another. And what, back then, enticed us to Buy! Buy! Buy!? Sex, celebrity and success, of course, and in some cases the promise of all three. Indeed, the selfsame tactic employed to this very day. Produced around the last decade of the 19th Century, the posters’ fin de siècle exuberance and gaiety is much in evidence. The ‘It Girls’ of their day - sinewy damsels, bejewelled and beguiling - are glorious. Their art of persuasion brought to life by Lautrec, Mucha and their contemporaries is inspirational; their artwork an outstanding legacy gratefully enjoyed by more than a few. As a result, who wouldn’t want to sip on a glass of chilled Laurent Perrier Belle Époque Champagne? The wellheeled thirty-something couple, enjoying a more than modest measure of Absinthe, on the other hand, should probably have known better. ML Centro Cultural Bancaja | Plaza de Tetuán, 23, Valencia | 96 387 58 64 | Daily 9am-9pm | Free! " An artist is not paid for his labor but for his vision. (James Whistler) 10/05/1940 Germany invades Holland and Belgium and Winston Churchill becomes PM. A few days later he makes his famous "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat" speech which sparked unified British resistance.


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Red wine cocktails

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know it may sound weird to some of our friends but sometimes we do struggle to ďŹ nish a bottle of wine of an evening. It's true! As you will be aware drinking next day wine can be a bit hit or miss so this month we focus our thoughts on making cocktails out of red wine whether it be left over or fresh out of an uncorked bottle, making some refreshing drinks to enjoy in the sunshine.

*Tip| During the warmer months try serving your red wine cooled for 45 minutes in the fridge. Best with lighter wines like Tempranillo.

one Kalimotxo 100 ml red wine 100 ml Coca-Cola

Combine the two liquids. Best served cold, but without ice Serves 1 Serve in a highball glass.

two Cabernet Cobbler 120 ml chilled Cabernet Sauvignon 1 tsp fresh lemon juice 1 tsp superďŹ ne sugar 60 ml chilled soda water or carbonated water Dissolve the sugar in the lemon juice and the water. Add cracked ice. Pour the Cabernet Sauvignon. Stir gently. Garnish with an orange slice.

three Seaside Summerbliss For an extra kick use real cider 2 parts red wine 3 parts sweet non-alcoholic apple cider

Serves 1

Pour the red wine. Add the cider.

Serve in large wine glass.

Serves 1 Serve in a long glass.


A day in the life in VLC | Liam Quashie

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iving in Valencia and the Community is surprising, varied and exciting and everyone sees something dierent. We thought it would be fun to see what other people see. For one day, a reader will take a photo of what they can see on the hour, every hour for 9 hours. This month, Liam shows us his Fallas. Contact us if you want to have a go - invlceditor@gmail.com.

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11/05/1981 Reggae's Bob Marley dies. He had collapsed the previous year while jogging in Central Park. It was found that a cancerous growth on an old soccer injury on his big toe had spread to Marley's brain, liver and lungs.


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Animals | When a buzz in the bedroom isn't so fun

Advanced

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pril has arrived and with it comes the blue skies, bright sunlight, sizzling daily temperatures and the balmy nights that we all associate with the arrival of the summer months here in the Valencian Community.

Foster/ permanent homes URGENTLY required

©enimal

However with the advent of those days, which are constantly over 20 degrees, we quickly remember that there is also a downside to living here in the sunshine - the arrival of the blood-sucking mosquitoes. Some people are lucky and very rarely get bitten while others seem to act like a mosquito magnet. Others can suffer quite strong allergic reactions to their bites and find themselves constantly scratching their inflamed skin for relief. I know - I'm an allergy sufferer myself. There is a saying that the female of the species is more deadlier than the male. This is certainly borne out with mosquitoes, as only the females will bite animals and humans. They are reckoned to be the most deadly force in human history due to their proficiency in transmitting malaria, yellow and dengue fever and elephantiasis (where in the most part legs - and even worse the scrotum - can swell to the size of a basketball!). The World Health Organisation's World Malaria Report 2011, estimated there were 216 million cases of malaria and 655,000 deaths attributable in 2010. Luckily for those living here - Spain officially eradicated malaria in 1964. Malaria is once again in the news this month as word has just broken of a new worrying development in malaria on the Thailand/Burma border. Doctors are seeing increasing resistance of the malaria parasite to the most effective treatment to combat it - the Chinese plant Artemisia Annua (also known as Sweet Wormwood). If this type were to move to India or Africa the consequences would be simply horrifying.

Name| Berty Boy Age| 18 Months Size| Medium Personality| Energetic, friendly, good with dogs Appearance| Catalan Sheepdog Health| Vaccinated, castrated. Info| P.E.P.A - 650 304 746 www.pepaspain.com

Now we at inVLC do not normally advocate killing in any form but this month's article is different and we have discovered the following tip which we want to pass on: the blood-sucking is done in support of reproduction and is at the risk of the mosquito's life, so not surprisingly, they tend to be adept at dodging direct attack. However, if mosquitoes were to take alarm at every nearby movement, they would not be able to rest in breezy weather with leaves oscillating in the wind. Accordingly, they are adapted to ignore side-to-side movement, so a resting female permits a finger to approach slowly if the finger moves several centimetres from side-to-side about once a second. With practice you can use this strategy to squash resting mosquitoes with high frequency. We hope that this tip will help lessen the anger you feel after missing it for the tenth time with your rolled-up magazine at the nightly man vs. mosquito fight around your bedroom.

13/05/1981 Pope John Paul II is shot in the Vatican City. His attacker Mehmet Ali Agca claimed after that "he had planned to go to England to kill the King but couldn't because it turned out there was only a queen and Turks don't shoot women."


Events & Classifieds

Rastros | Montroy | 6 May 3 June (1st Sun monthly)| C/ La Pau, 625 674 906 Sagrario Masia | 21 Apr 19 May (3rd Sat monthly * Note day change!) Mas Pavia Restaurante, nr Monserrat. Eng 625819734/ Spa 616399372, sparklesinsunshine@gmail.com.

Lliria | 12 May (2nd Sat monthly) | Bellamy's Bar, 18 Avenida Polideportivo, Domeño, Tables free. 962728708, Lyn 625217777 magpiesbar@yahoo.com

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Markets | Mon-Montroy, Tues-Monserrat & Turis, Weds-L’Eliana Piccassent & Villamarchante, Thurs-Alaquas & Lliria, Fri-Moraira, Turis, Torrente & Chiva, Sat-Real de Montroy & Torrente, Sun-Alborache

For sale| - Free Standing 4 ring gas cooker €50, Prenatal travel cot with sleeping bag (used once) €40, Child's booster seat €5, Selection of Sky boxes for sale P.O.A, Montserrat area, 637004816 - Good quality portable massage table. €50 Robert 633752202 pladecalvo@gmail.com

Events & networking groups| Charity May Fayre| 28 April La Drova, Barx. In aid of PEPA and CARITAS, there will be market stalls, food, drink, games, activities, competitions. All welcome. IWC| Monthly coffee mornings. An independent organisation offering: Support, Friendship, networking... 3 May, 7 June. HIPERCOR - C.Comercial Ademuz, Av. Pio XII, 51 VLC, top floor restaurant. www.iwc-valencia.ning.com 2nd Friday lunch| 18 May A get together group for lunch and chat. 2pm. The venue changes regularly. Contact mm@centralpoint.es for more info. Internations events| A monthly meet up of international people. www.internations.org Valencia Loves You| A group for the international ladies of VLC to expand social & professional networks. Join 'Valencia Loves You' on Facebook.

In the number puzzle, each letter is represented by a number 1-26. Crack the code! 3 letters are already in place. In Sudoku, every row & column of 9 numbers & 3x3 box must include all digits 1-9 in any order.

Finished with your inVLC ? Pass it on to a friend..!


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inVLC Apr/May 2012  

Valencia's best free and independent monthly magazine for locals, visitors and ex-pats.