I really need to distance myself from him I know but a friend is a friend none the less, and he’s helped me out on numerous occasions but last month he gave me an offer I couldn’t refuse…well not to his face anyway – it was a kind gesture and one that I really was grateful for but not one that I wanted, ever. You see he has trees, orange and lemon trees, and he’s generous with his fruit. But I don’t want it. I mean I really don’t want it but he insists on giving it to me. Free fruit? Why am I not snapping his him off for it you might well ask…allow me to fill you in (in a nice way of course). For several years now I’ve been accepting his gifts of fruit without question, as most people would, and he won’t take any cash for them as he has always reminded me that he has so Avda Escandinavia 72, many that he’d rather give Gran Alacant them away than let them rot. Bookings: 689 077 602 Nice chap you see and I must admit they’ve always been rather tasty. However, following a discussion on how best to fertilize orange trees, in one of the local bars recently, Charlie (I’ll call him
that to save my embarrassment) shushed everyone and informed them that he had, for a long time now, produced wonderful juicy fruit – and
achieved that result by emptying his cess pit on them every time it was full… I’m sure you now understand why Charlie’s oranges and lemons are now off the menu for me and why I now look the man behind the fruit counter in the market firmly in the eyes before buying any perishables that may have been doused by a crap fertilizer (literally). The fact that if a horse had happened to do it doesn’t come into it – you haven’t met Charlie…however, my shrink says I
may recover…someday… Back to the magazine (if you can get that out of your head) and a cracking article from Mr Grumpy this month on the Spanish unions while the puzzle page has more problems to solve than the Spanish treasury. A fascinating Father and son article by local dentist Paul Saliba and son Michael about their respective expat lives too and of course there’s always the jokes page with plenty of giggles. A big thanks to everyone who has been in touch via Twitter, Facebook and the website with ideas and suggestions to include in All Abroad – although some of them may not quite have been suitable for all! Keep ‘em coming and look out for us on the road or on the radio with Cliff Roberts AKA the Sherriff on Real Radio every afternoon Opening Times between 3-6pm on 95.6FM or 10am -1am listen live at www.realradio. Every Day es – sticking to the theme, the bloke is a real fruit and nutcase, I promise!
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Mr Grumpy ADVICE INFOTIPS V NEWS Spanish Unions... I had this really great idea for an article a few weeks back. All lofty high-brow stuff that would need loads of research and take ages to write and make me look really knowledgeable and stuff.
of employment should A.) Consider themselves
of September until the end of December over
very fortunate in a time of almost 23% levels
protest against Possible jobs cuts (Note: NOT
of unemployment - and rising, and B.) Perhaps
actual job cuts : Isn’t this as good way in
consider doing all that they could to both safe-
bringing the affirmative about ?)
all that they could to ensure that they did their
Pilots working for Iberia also held 4 strike
The subject was going to be about the vast
part to get the country back on it’s feet again.
dates over the bust Christmas Holiday period,
guard their position and ensure that they did
designed to cause maximum disruption at a
number of strikes that have taken place in Spain over recent years, but to be honest, I
Blackmail : “ any payment extorted by
time when many people obviously want to fly
lost count (and interest) when I got as far as
intimidation, as by threats of injurious
somewhere. Again, this action caused just
February 2010 and my research ground to a
revelations or accusations.”
short of 500 flight cancellations and was due to ‘fears about job losses’.
pitiful halt. As such, given my inability to finish anything
Following my half-hearted attempts at doing
The lastest Strike on Weds 11th Jan marked
requiring any persistence or hard work, I was
something a purist may call research, and
the 24th time that Pilots alone (not baggage
left with 2 choices : Leave the idea well alone
shortly before abandoning the idea at the first
handlers, not groundc crew, not cabin atten-
and blog about my usual guff instead, or con-
hurdle, a few nuggets of information still stick
dants...) had taken action in 35 years !
tinue the blog without the credible proof and
in my mind...
(Anybody else see the irony here that a lack
statistics and basically making stuff up as I go
In the last 12 months (give or take) alone,
of actually being able to fly will lead to a drop
along and ranting in my usual disjointed man-
there have been many strikes - too many to
in demand for flight, which will then lead to
ner. I chose the latter ...
list here - but the notable ones are these :
inevitable job losses ...?
Air Traffic Controller strike : Dec 2010 This Treason : “ a violation of allegiance to
‘strike’ arose when all of Spain’s ATC’s called
Madrid Metro Strikes : Aug 2011 The City of
one’s sovereign or to one’s state “
in sick on the same day. As opposed to taking
Madrid worked hard to secure the hosting of
‘legal’ strike action they petulantly struck out
the Catholic Church World Youth Day, expected
Without getting all boring and stuff, even those
over ‘working conditions’ - meaning that they
to result in Hundreds of Thousands of visitors
with little interest in Spain are aware that the
were upset that their lucrative overtime pack-
to the capital from all around the word. People
country currently has one of the worst rates of
age had been cut. The ATC’s as a whole were
spending much needed money in the hospital-
unemployment in Europe - even the Western
revealed to have an average yearly salary in
ity sector. So the Metro workers decided to
world - which is twice as bad when looking at
excess of 200’000 Euros - 40% more than
completely close down over ‘salary negotia-
the under 25 age group.
their counterparts in the rest of Europe - and
So, with this in mind (or at least in my naive
allowed to retire at 57, as opposed to 67 like
and obviously totally unknowledgeable opin-
the rest of Spanish workers.
Sabotage : “ any underhand interference with
ion) I would have thought that anybody actu-
The teddy was out of cot due to plans to limit
production, work, etc., in a plant, factory, etc.,
ally being fortunate enough to actually have a
their overtime (not basic salary) and cap the
as by enemy agents during wartime or by
legal position of employment at this moment
number of hours that they could work (not
employees during a trade dispute. “
in time would consider themselves to be in a
force them to work more).
The strike caused to closure of Spanish air-
The tourist industry is vitally important to
But it seems that the opposite is actually the
space for 2 days and resulted in the military
Spain and 2010 / 2011 through enough chal-
case and two things make by blood boil here :
needing to assume control of all control Tow-
lenges as the sector with things like Volcanic
eruptions or snow preventing arrivals from
Traitor : “ person who commits treason by
This caused the cancellation of thousands of
Northern Europe. So when a gift horse comes
betraying his or her country.”
flights at the busiest weekend for travel in the
along like the Arab Spring making Spain seem
Spanish calendar year - the December Bank
more favourable as a holiday destination once
Firstly, that since the crash of the property
Holiday (Meaning an unrecoverable loss of
again, the last thing we need is some Union
market at the end of 2007 (when Spain’s
millions of euros in revenues for the tourism
Knobhead messing things up.
Travel and Tourism numbers reached record
industry) and a lengthy and expensive com-
highs and have since been out of reach) the
pensation claim by passengers and prosecution
Hopefully the new Government will grow a
importance of other sectors (such as T&T)
case against the ATC’s - all of which the tax
pair of ‘Cojones’ and stand up to these people,
have become all the more important in provid-
payer must fork out for.
They need to remember that there are around
ing sources of employment, and to the wider
Pilots Strikes : Too numerous to mention.
4.85 million people out there that will gladly do
economy as a whole.
Pilots working for Air Europa took strike ac-
their job for them if they don’t want to do it.
Secondly, that anyone fortunate enough to
tion forcing a 40% reduction of all services on
have a legal and reasonably well paid contract
every Monday and Thursday since the start
- BUT IT’S FLATTERING TO BE COPIED - ALL ABROAD!
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Tel. 96 669 8301
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News regarding the Wealth Tax
Fiscal help... Spanish probate / Inheritances
ou might have heard the
And here a few
news regarding the wealth
more notes that,
tax that affects non residents’
by my experience,
and residents’ tax declarations.
are important to
The Spanish Government has re-
introduced the wealth tax which
was abolished not so long ago.
1. Please note that you will not
It takes effect from the tax year
receive any notification or re-
2011 that is payable in 2012.
quest from the tax office. The
Power of attorney
(Non-residents between 1st Janu-
tax forms shall be presented
ary and 31st December 2012 and
Private sales contracts
residents in May/June 2012)
Change-over of utility bills
Not surprisingly the tax office is
2. These taxes are not to be
looking for more income. Howev-
confused with the Suma pay-
er, most will probably not pay any-
ment which is the rates pay-
thing because the first 700.000,-
ment. Your fiscal representa-
Euros are exempt from this tax.
tive will request a copy of that
The Autonomous Community of
payment simply for the base of
Valencia has the right to establish
a different tax exempt amount to the one given by the Government.
3. Proof of payment of these
I have checked this out with the
taxes will be requested by the
authorities and, although the final
tax office when you sell your
decision will not be taken until the
property. Non-payment within
end of the year, the existing draft
the deadline will result in inter-
is to adhere to the same amount.
est on arrears, if payment is demanded by the tax office there
The non-residents’ obligation to
will also be a fine to pay.
appoint a fiscal representative with relation to their tax obligations in Spain was also reaffirmed
I wish you all a very happy 2012.
by article 6 of the same law. Andrea Burns
Avenida América, 32, GRAN ALACANT 96 669 7824 OFFICE@ANDREABURNS.ES
Our own contributors - experienced for expat info
STILL the cheapest advertising around- TEL. 606 540 408
BELTED KING FISHER
by Malcolm Palmer Every spring and autumn – especially autumn – a rash of rare birds crops up away from their habitual migration routes. Why? Mainly because birds don’t read too well, and don’t know they are supposed to follow certain routes, but really, if we’re being serious, because, meteorological conditions affect their navigation. Birds’ navigation, it has been proved experimentally, is dependent on the sun, in the case of diurnal migrants, and the stars for the night-travellers. They may also follow geographical features like coastlines, rivers and mountain ranges. (What we can’t explain satisfactorily is how they manage ‘dead reckoning’ – like, ‘right, this is Fred’s garage, where I have nested the last five years, so I’ve arrived (after a little trip from Namibia)!’ – clever stuff, that will probably beat your GPS system.) Anyway, back to the rarities. If rare birds were easy to find, then they wouldn’t be rare. No s--t, Sherlock, I hear you say, but judging from the claims I receive from some people, they are either extraordinarily lucky, or, well……. Right. The first and paramount rule with any rarity is to eliminate all the more likely species – in all their juvenile, winter, female, moulting, aberrant, semialbino, or otherwise grotty plumages. Get the bird narrowed down to family, to genus, then really study it – calls and behaviour, habitat, the lot. Above all, plumage details, ‘soft parts’ – i.e. bill, legs, eye-colour, eye-ring, if any, and, most importantly, the structure of the bird. Long- or short-winged? (Wings extending beyond tail when on ground is a good clue) Large- or small-headed? Length of legs? All this, of course, is largely unnecessary if you can get a decent photo. Doesn’t have to be an award-winner, but needs to be clear!
So how often do you find a rare bird? More often here than in Britain, where there are many more watchers, but suffice to say that I spend a lot of time in the field, and in the twenty-five years I’ve been watching in Alicante I’ve actually found, almost always in the company of someone else, 18 reportable rarities, in Alicante Province, and three more in other parts of Spain. I have been lucky enough to ‘twitch’ – on information received – about twelve more. In all, then, less than two per year, and there aren’t that many folk who have spent more time in the field than I have in that time. One I do know, Jacobo Ramos (by a distance the Province’s best field ornithologist), has seen a few that I haven’t! I have also, of course, seen a fair number – 20 or so – ‘local rarities’ – that is birds that may well be common in other parts of Spain, but are as rare as hen’s teeth here. What, then, is the secret to finding rarities? First of all, get to know – and love – all the common species, and understand their plumage-sequences, what their juveniles and females look like, etc. Visit all the ‘hot-spots’ – freshwater, marshes and woodland near the coast, headlands, areas unfrequented by dogs and people, and be prepared to visit these places a hundred times and see nothing interesting. On the next visit, who knows? Take field notes if in doubt, and look, rather than see! If a bird has white bars on its plumage, you want to know where. Careful fieldwork is the basis of all knowledge of natural history. If in doubt, try reading Gilbert White’s ‘Natural History of Selbourne’ – and discover how an eighteenth century parson learned the difference between Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff – as well as many other facts – well before binoculars and telescopes came into being. Good luck!
BUFF BREASTED SANDPIPER
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from Restaurante Veintiocho Hondon de los Frailes Restaurante Veintiocho is going from strength to strength and now will soon be going in their ﬁfth year Simone and Marcus would like to say thank you to all our customers and hard working staff. We have had a very successful 2011. While we read about the ‘Crisis’, familiar faces continued to ﬂow through the doors. As we entered the New Year, we both wondered what lay ahead for the forth coming year. Already Valentines Day was just around the corner and after that Easter, school holidays, summer and the Fiesta in August. It seemed as though the year was already planned for us although we had new plans, menus and product ranges we had no idea how the public would react. The response was fantastic. Mid way through the summer we released our new Cottage Delights ranges with mouth watering fudge and chilli jam. The range was suitably complimented by a choice of our own homemade chutneys thats when we could keep up with the demand. Ginger beer and sparkling Elderﬂower were amongst the choices of new drinks we went for to counter act the efforts of the local trafﬁco. Mike Haworth paintings were another new addition in 2011, exhibited in the restaurant they created a lot of attention, with people just calling into view and also purchase the paintings. In July we decided to throw a party to celebrate Simones birthday. Our staff and customers all came together to make the perfect day and a rare opportunity for us to experience life on the other side of the counter, a Mike Haworth painting was a perfect gift. Again thank you to all who helped. Summer progressed well and by the end of August we were a well oiled machine all set for the Hondon de los Frailes Fiesta. Demand for tables was ferocious and a good time had by all as the partying led into the early hours of the morning. By the end of September we expected things to slow down although this was not the case as the bookings were still ﬂowing in and we had received our ﬁrst wedding reception booked for October. Again congratulations to Bill & Dianne! The later months of the year continued to bring us a fantastic trade with good response to the pre Christmas Festivities. The kids Christmas party went off without a hitch (a special thank you to Santa and his elf). A Christmas music quiz and carol service dinner brought more festive cheer before the fully booked big day and New Years Eve. With dates in the Diary already we are looking forward to seeing you in 2012
Thank you from Simone & Marcus.
Psychologically speaking! As we enter February, how are the New Year’s resolutions going??? There are two things we need to remember if the resolutions made have not turned out as you had wished. The first is, ‘was I aiming to high in the goal that I have set myself?’ This is very common especially when we want to make a big change like not smoking or drinking.. The way around making something like this less difficult is to say ‘today I am not going to smoke or drink’, taking things like this one day at a time makes it a lot easier. The second thing is, just because this resolution has not worked out as I wished, how could I make it work? Look at your goal again. If it is maybe about losing weight but you’re not getting on with the diet you have set yourself, write a list of the foods you like and then look at the advice on the internet about how to put a diet together and go from here.
Good luck! Liz Steward
Be Original - ALL ABROAD! -TEL. 606 540 408
The Hondon de Las Nieves
Kitchen Open All Day
Friendly faces & friendly prices from people you can trust
Ship El Barco
Daily newspapers Fri, Sat & Sun in store John Smith’s Strongbow Guinness Varied
1.10€ per 500ml can 1.10€ per 500ml can 1.65€ 4.40ml selection of world wines in store
+ Real Ales in stock
SEA KLEAR products for pools and hot tubs now in stock
Aberdeen Angus - Steaks - Joints - gammons & many other BBQ items available to order
Opening hours Mon 10 till 14.00 Tuesday to Friday 10 till 14.00 & 17.00 till 19.00 Saturday 10 till 14.00 Selection of golf Sunday 10 till 13.30
accesories in store
Tel/Fax 965 480718
Large selection of dry & frozen Dutch products
Sunday Roast CHARITY
Curry Night Pla. Amistat 6, La Marina Village (next to the church)
Tel. 648 963 843
Calle Nueva 7 Hondon de Las Nieves
QUALITY NEW AND USED FURNITURE We buy - sell and part-exchange New stock daily Separate large Bedroom shop stocking new and used beds
Also at: ZOCO MARKET Every Sunday large air-conditioned shop within the market www.almarchainsurance.com E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
British bedding ‘An Kitchenware A l addins C Small electricals av of ideas e Lamps !’ Candles Pictures Within the main shop in Elyseos Playa/ Mar Azul we now have a large dept sellMirrors ing New Household Items, everything to
VI TALAR SVENSKA
complement the home from the decorative to the practical.
Opening times Mon-Fri 10 – 7pm (No siesta) Sat 10 – 2. Items to sell and enquiries call:
965 715 605
Be Original - ALL ABROAD! -TEL. 606 540 408
It Just Is...
All Abroad editor Dave Bull has lived in Spain for 12 years and his new book reflects just some of those experiences that we have all gone through as expats in Spain - available now through local outlets, Amazon & Kindle Dave’s book is proving very popular among expats and antone else with nothing better to do...
‘If you’re thinking of buying a place abroad you must read It Just Is… full of helpful advice and info’, as well as a darn good laugh!’ Steve Hall. Founder of
It just is...
The following is an excerpt from the recently published book, It just is.. SUNDAY JANUARY 31st 2010 What a January day. The sun is shining, the sky is blue and I’m sitting in one of Alicante’s trendiest bars in the trendiest area, but just at the wrong time of day… Effigies of Tin Tin and Snowy and the Thompson Twins (not the 80’s band) surround me - this is Captain Haddock’s Bar. On the arm of Alicante port, this place is alive with music, laughter and life - buzzing with youthful sweat and expectation, but at night. Not, as usual, while I am here. Still, not a bad place to be; seagulls screeching and scrounging in the sun and the clink clink of yacht masts while welldressed locals amble along looking relaxed and content. The odd Brit (easy to spot: football shirt, tattoo, shorts in winter, socks and sandals – and the men are as bad) stumbles along dragging a hot family behind in search of ‘a bloody pint and some chips.’ I’ve escaped to the port but back on the Urb things are kicking off again, the personal trainer is back. Having left under a very dark cloud a year ago the Urb’s very own Mr Motivator is back - minus the wife. Mr M vehemently denied any ‘improper’ behaviour with one of his attractive, Swedish, female, curvy clients and went back to the UK – chasing the wife – and bemoaning those who prejudged. Well that didn’t work out and luckily Miss Sweden has allowed him to move in with her, and help look after the little one. Not sure where Miss Sweden’s husband is in all this but was last heard of sending emails from a North Sea oil rig threatening to ‘rip out Mr M’s lungs and feed them to the fish...’ TORREVIEJA While I’m here though I really need to get a front page story finished for the - Inn Plaice, Torreta 2 newspaper about Triads. You see in my role as the editor I don’t get to face much danger – the worst I get is probably a letter from ‘annoyed – name and SAN MIGUEL address withheld.’ So when I decided to write an article about people-traffick- Bargain Books ing on the Costas - after receiving bagful’s of letters concerning the presence BENIJOFAR of East European prostitutes on just about every roundabout in Spain, and - The Post Room Chinese DVD sellers outside of every bar - I thought nothing of it. My boss Ken, an ex-army major, ironically doesn’t like confrontation and was worried LA MARINA that the Triads would be out to get us if we printed it and made me remove - Cards & More any reference that might incur the wrath of the ‘Godfathers’ of the orient. - News4U His son Nick, who owns the newspaper, doesn’t help either. He thinks he knows what he’s doing with computers but has about as much success as a SANTA POLA cow with a Rubik’s cube. Each of our computers has problems with email. My - Tabacos C/Muelle ‘Inbox’ receives at least five hundred messages per day (of which about 490 QUESADA are ‘junk’) so if I have a day or two away from the office I can return to well - Cards & Things Avda des Na- over a thousand emails to search through on my return. Having said that, this ciones (next to Oscars bar) week it’s stopped working altogether, which in a way is a blessing. Couple that with the fact that Ken’s other son, Derek, has swapped my computer with GRAN ALACANT his – ‘because it’s better than mine’ – and now I don’t have Microsoft Word, - Quicksave or any other word processor program. I also can’t print anything because the - Suzie Screws Book Club printer can’t be connected to my computer…according to Nick, and so here I - Times Square am a journalist with a PC that can’t print and with no way to read letters, articles or comments, or even with a means of communicating with anyone electronically – and I’m now writing this at home on a Friday after a week of working like this. Still next week things will sort themselves out I’m sure. I stopped off for a burger on the way home and felt that I should really congratulate Ronald for making something that tastes exactly like it sounds, have you tried the Mc-
Where to buy it?
The Coastrider Newspaper At last! Someone has written about those funny moments that we all experience being expats – and made it very, very funny! Ginette Stride I seem 2 have posted 3 reviews on Facebook via my kindle lol I can honestly say despite being a bookworm from a young age it’s been a while since a book held my interest, couldn’t wait 4 a spare 5 mins 2 read a bit more Lynne Zaber I have a complaint!! Started reading it just is.... last night, picked it up again this morning making me late for work because I couldn’t put it down!! Loving it!!!!!! Just finished it just is.... and didn’t want it to end!! It was a great read and I could relate to a lot of it. I even knew some of the people you were talking about. Can’t wait for the next one, Dave x Bruce Oram Great read, cannot wait for the next one Claire Boorman Ok got your book, and I started reading it, I’m impressed it’s very good, I have been laughing out loud. Highly recommend it. My mate got it in Quicksave, when I was reading I was laughing thinking you must do another one. God your soooo right with the characters!!! X John Moore Finished the book! Funny or what? Fantastic! Mike Haynes Seriously, great read though and anyone who holidays here or lives here will relate to some part of the book, very good. Claire Worland Fab read and certainly worked out some of the characters!! Lol. Highly recommended read. David Ashby Buy this its brilliant, Spain as it is PS did buy a chainsaw don’t worry it’s for work. Tracey Jeffries wanna say Dave - bloody hilarious I’m laughing out loud approx 3 x per page and the thing about control pants I had to read to colleagues !! And I’m interested in who the ‘fit’ girl was from school..?
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What goes down...
Mystic Monkey ‘Uuuummmmm...’
Fantasy Footy 2011-12
Following last month’s multiple super heroic endeavors to sort out a variety of problems, this month bills demanding payment for broken walls, roads, vehicles and water dams will arrive. Check any local or national government schemes for disaster relief before charging them to your credit or debit card.
It seems that Dave Bull (our editor) has had a lucky break with his All Abroad Late 11 as
No matter how firm your jaw, there will always be some Taurus somewhere with a firmer jaw. No matter how buff your exercise regime can make your chest, some Taurus somewhere will have a better one, even if it is surgically enhanced. Following last month’s silver screen linked romantic endeavors, this month may be the time to relax your love muscles and put away your 3D glasses. Saturn has a flour based treat in store for you around the 7th of the month, especially if you work in a bakery and have to get to work by 3am for the early shift. Cancer - February 2010 - Funny Horoscope Acting as an intermediary in any contract negotiation, being a character witness for some person involved in some sort of fraud trial, or even reading fortunes using a crystal ball, are modestly starred for much of the month. Crunching, chewing but not burping, are all well starred this month, especially at high tea on Thursdays and Fridays in Belgium. The slurping advisory we should have warned you about last month, but didn’t, is about to be downgraded to a low rumble. Saturn and Neptune are determined to upset a glass vase or a statuette of a horse or pony in your house near the door this month. Take extra precautions for goldfish in bowls and trippy up cables which you should have had tucked away securely by now. Uncomfortable pauses in conversations are set to pepper this month in strangely uplifting ways, especially with very devout religious types (assuming you can get a word in edgewise). You will have a quibble and are determined to try it out in a widely advertised no quibble guarantee. Jupiter is on Scorpio’s side in any quibbling activity for much of the time. Horses, water buffalo, bulls, but not Moose, are well starred this month especially in the afternoon. Chocolate cakes and cakes with a lemon icing are particularly well starred this month and, due to a freak planetary alignment, they will be completely fat free until dusk of the 19th. Jolly Capricorns, mostly the fat ones, but jolly thin ones too if you are one, are speculatively starred this month in most hilarious situations, and for well into the year. Chortles, giggles and even LOL’s are particularly indicated in train stations, supermarkets and in cubical farm type office layouts. Harping on about something, hopping on your left foot and harps and harpsichords, the musical instruments, are all spasmodically starred this month in no particular order and / or volume and/or playing ability.
Tom Daniel has stepped in and taken over bottom spot. However, Damon Rose of Santa Pola Dive
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Academy is still doing his best to be the one who’s trawling the bottom. Club Cars of La Marina seem to have stalled (although it is possible that James has said ‘stuff it’ and found something far more productive to do with his time although fellow La Mariner and man in white coat Paul Saliba is ﬁnally getting his teeth into it and making a move up the table. Further up we see Paul’s son Michael – both of whom are in this issue of All Abroad (see Expat Lives) is showing his father they way by reaching the relatively dizzy heights of 2oth. A good showing from La Marina in the league table but it seems that a little further up the coast is where the fantasy football experts (so far…) are residing with TV cameraman Brad Cullen focusing on a top spot and last year’s winner Alan McGinn again mine a ﬁne challenge for glory. Who will win the battle of the Costas? And who cares? Well anyone who wants a nice cash prize at the end of it I guess!
The problem with the accelerator in your new Toyota, that we forgot to mention last month because we didn’t have the time, is set to cause problems. Jupiter is in charge of the recall, if you must drive it don’t go above 2 mph until it is fixed.
Good luck to all and remember… if you’re innit, you can winnit!
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YOUR COMPUTER Got a question? Ask Steve at firstname.lastname@example.org
Questions & ANSWERS
with Steve Haynes of
this is an adapter to run from your laptops USB connection and lets you
It is most likely that the cooling fans are that’s causing the noise and
connect the serial end of the midi
the sleepless nights for your wife.
cable so you have the same functionality. An alternative would be to replace your midi/serial cable for a midi/USB cable. This is now the standard way to connect midi devices to a modern PC. These are normally cheap at about €15 to €30 and very easy to set up. I would ensure that your software on your computer supports this type of connection before you purchase anything.
Some people can spend quite a lot of money cutting down the noise their computer emits. But this is normally people work in the recording industry and for the home user super quiet PC’s are very expensive. However there are a few things that can be done to cut the sound down. The power supply can be exchanged for a silent model. This uses a large heat sink to dissipate the heat away from the components. It still has a fan but this will only spins once the internal temperature reaches and certain level. So the majority of the time PSU is totally silent. I myself use this type of PSU and can confirm that it is silent. Here in Spain we seem to get a lot of dust and computers are like Hoovers as they continually suck in air to keep them cool, so it’s no wonder that the case they are sometimes covered in dust and needing a good clean. The dust builds up on the blades of the fans and this in turn makes the loud whirring noise as the blades spin round. So giving these a quick clean can drastically reduce the noise. It’s best to clean this with compressed air only. Either a small compressor or a bottle of compressed air works well. I would never recommend never using a domestic Hoover for this job. Finally don’t ever try to hide your computer in a cabinet or cover it to damping the sound as this may restrict the airflow around your system and cause issues with overheating. As ever if you need any more help let me know and I can help further, Steve
Good luck and let me know if you need any more help, Steve
HOT AND BOTHERED Hi Steve, I write music and use my computer in conjunction with my Keyboard, it’s a Roland. I used to be able to plug my midi cable directly into my laptop but since I bought the new laptop. This no longer has a port to connect my midi cable and I’m wondering if I can get an adapter or can I add the port in some way. Nigel. Gran Alacant Hi Nigel, Your midi cable has a midi connection on one end and what’s known as a serial connection on the other. This was widely used for many years as the standard computer connection for external peripherals such as modems, barcode scanners and could even be used to connect some telescopes to your computer. Since the introduction of USB serial has been slowly phased out as it was much slower and sometimes difficult to configure. You have a few options here to connect your keyboard; you can either get a USB to serial cable
Dear Steve, My computer is normally switched on most of the day and throughout the night as I do quite a lot of downloading. But my wife is now complaining that the noise of the computer is keeping her awake at night and she wants it turned off. Is there a way I can cut the noise down on my computer so I can still continue my downloading during the night? The noise is a constant hum that seems the fans or the power supply.
Jim Green, La Zenia Hi Jim,
Have you got a computer problem that you need some help with? if so either write to us here at the magazine or contact Steve direct on email@example.com or 96 671 8705
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New bar opening in Fortuna promises to put a smile on customer’s faces It’s always nice to see someone ‘bucking the trend’ especially in the current economic climate and in Fortuna that’s exactly what is going on Las Kalendas urbanisation where locals the Bettis family are planning to get even busier by opening Charly’s Bar, which is next door to two of the family’s other businesses, the British supermarket - where you can pick up your copy of All Abroad as well as support local good causes such as MABS and Barney’s Dog Charity - and their second hand shop. Tucked away behind these you’ll ﬁnd their daughters hair salon, Sizzor Sisters, which means that you can get your hair styles, grab a coffee and do a little shopping without having to get back in the car and travel! The family plan to inject some of their fun and exciting ideas into the new venture and entice diners and drinkers alike with some great offers that will leave customers satisﬁed having tried their good food and possibly a nice drink or two but, (and this is where the guys and gals have put their thinking caps on) everything is also served up at very reasonable prices with special offers being introduced every month. With breakfasts starting at just one euro and cans of John Smith’s or Strongbow at a very cost effective 2.20€ per can the winners at Charly’s bar will be the many punters who are sure to take advantage of some of the great deals and dishes being offered up. As I said right at the start it good to see people dishing up some positive moves and giving customers what they really need in these times of crisis crunching and budget trimming. At Charly’s a night (or daytime) snack or tapas and drink won’t leave your pockets empty…just what we need at the moment I ‘d say…good service at good prices serving good fare at a great price. Charly’s will be open from the ﬁrst of February. But don’t just take my word for it…pop along and meet the family at Charly’s –you’ll thank me for it! (and if you do…well… you can always leave me one, ‘in the bin’…?
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Expat Lives introduction This month a rather special edition of Expat lives with father and son (Michael and Paul Saliba) writing about their respective experiences of expat life in Spain, I think we have at least one budding writer here…although for one of them, I’m sure he’d rather be pulling teeth..!
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MOVING TO SPAIN…AS SIMPLE AS PULLINGTEETH When dentist Paul Saliba and his family decided to make the move to Spain it was the first time had pulled himself up…by the roots! Here he talks to Dave Bull about the experiences the family had as they settled in Spain with a new business to run. Deciding to leave the UK with a young family is never easy especially when you are already running a successful dental practice, but Paul Saliba did just this, arriving in Alicante in 2003. Paul talks about why he moved to Spain and how great a decision it has been for him and his family. Paul and his wife Sally were living in the southwest of England; a very beautiful part of the country; however after waking to yet another rainy summer Sunday morning they felt that maybe they should look again at their long held daydream of moving to sunnier climes. However, weather was not the solitary reason for contemplating a move. Paul’s children were aged just eight and six years old and as any parents, they wanted the best life possible for their two young boys. They had been to Spain on holiday on a number of occasion and had always been impressed with the way family life seemed to take precedence over here. It was lovely to see children of all ages spending time with the elder generations and noted that children were always made to feel welcome wherever they were, rather than the second class citizens as so often happens in UK. One of Paul and Sally’s main concerns was for the boys’ education and they opted to send them to a British school giving them the choice of continuing there careers either in UK or in Spain. Eight years later, they still have not left the school they had joined when they first arrived in Spain, the eldest just successfully completing his GCSEs. However there were professional reasons too for the move. Paul had managed to build up a successful practice in the Cornwall however which each passing year found that red tape and paperwork was taking up more and more of his working day. Frequent changes in the NHS contract for dentist had restricted more and more Paul’s ability to offer a full range of treatments to his patients; things were somewhat better privately but often the cost to patients was prohibitive. Paul started investigating different areas of Spain and finding an already working Dental Practice for sale on the Costa Blanca really set things in motion and in 2003 the British Dental Practice was formed.
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It was by no means easy starting off. Despite buying into a fully functioning prac-
Elche. Not only were we considerably closer to school now, but also we had a
tice (originally set up in 1990) he would have lots of paperwork to work through
huge garden that allowed me and my friends to play in and a lovely swimming
during the first year but he finally managed to buy full ownership of the practice.
pool. The house was nice and large, and we had our own olive tree field at the far
Starting off with a very basic knowledge of the Spanish language, Paul had to get
side of the premises of our house. I loved it, my older brother loved it, my par-
used to Spanish suppliers and technicians who, as we all know, have a different
ents loved it and Kiki liked it too. Soon after, we bought our first dog, Willow, and
way of doing things than we may be used to in UK. Over the years this has no
we have treasured her since. She loves our grand garden and I always remember
longer become a problem, and once you get used to the system, all obstacles can
how that wouldn’t be possible if we had stayed in England.
be overcome allowing the development of a successful business.
I recall the countless days I spent with my friends in the summer, playing ‘tag’ or
Paul has always strived to provide the highest level patient care and top quality
‘guns’ or any other game we could ever dream of playing. Spain gave me the op-
dental treatment on all levels. He brings 20 years of experience from UK and now
portunity to develop a passion for their favourite sport too: football. At the age of
offers the highest standard of dental care to all patients,
seven, I was being introduced into the footballing world by my friends and class-
whether they only require a simple scale and polish or far
mates. I am now a football fanatic to say the least, and even though I may not
more extensive crowns, bridges or cosmetic treatment.
be Lionel Messi when it comes to playing, I still enjoy a ‘kick-about’ either with
Paul always specialised with nervous patients, assisting
my friends at home or at my school. Whenever I talk to my friends from England,
them to overcome their fears and offering a comfortable
they never talk about playing football, which I think is a shame.
and sympathetic dental experience. He has endeavoured to
We met people who lived near us too and developed more friendships. I made
give the British Dental Practice as relaxing atmosphere as
more and more friends as the years passed and I celebrated a few good birthday
possible. Sympathetic staff will offer full explanation of all
parties too as time flew past. Spain was great for our family. My father was happy
treatments possible (and the relevant costs) in a language
running his own dental practice and my mother would always be at home, caring
that the patients can understand. He also believes that it im-
for me and my brother, Toby. My sister from England would come back to Spain
portant to treat each patient as an individual tailoring each
to see us several times a year. She appeared happy in England, and she seemed
treatment plan to their different needs, desires and expecta-
fine with our move to Alicante. We still see her quite often.
tions however maintaining the flexibility to change things
The other big difference I’ve noticed is that whenever my father and mother want
should the need arise. Once again it is the professional
to go to a restaurant, the Spanish are happy to allow children in of almost any
freedom to prescribe treatment according to the patient’s
age. Instead of being frowned upon, like so often in Britain, we often see children
needs, which ultimately means happy patients.
sitting, very sensibly, with their families. There is never any disruption and I won-
Paul loves the way his family has taken to Spanish life
der whether taking the children out to genteel restaurants at a young age makes
with the children having a mix of both British and Spanish
the child more mature. All in all, I certainly prefer a lovely meal from a top-class
cultures. The boys love being outdoors and playing all sorts
restaurant than a ‘happy meal’ from McDonalds!
of sports, are perfectly at home in any restaurant or when
After a couple of years in Matola, we took another choice to move to another
talking to adults and see family life as particularly important. However they will
house, the one we still live in today. In 2005 we moved to a small urbanisation
still be supporting England at the European championships next summer, much to
called Valverde. We bought a rundown house and brought life into it. We have a
the annoyance of their many Spanish friends.
pool, a lovely garden and much more space in the house. I would never want to
Heading home after a day at the British Dental Practice will often mean a walk on
leave Valverde any time soon. We are closer to school than ever, just fifteen min-
the beach or a dip in the pool for Paul; not a pleasure he was likely to enjoy back
utes in the car, and the urbanisation has so many great facilities. They have two
football pitches, one large and one small, a huge communal pool (although we do
Paul Saliba was interviewed by Dave Bull for MASA International who are experts
have our own!), a park and two concrete tennis courts. Luckily for me, two of my
in the sale of property in Spain
friends moved into the urbanisation too! I am practically next-door-neighbours
You can follow the adventures of Dave Bull in Spain by following @DavejBull on
with one and the other lives around the corner. This means that we often meet up
to play football and then jump into one of our refreshing pools. In England, I am
MISS ENGLAND? YOU MUST BE JOKING!
almost 100% certain that this would never have been possible, but I’m living in a place that is great for me. We bought our second dog, Alfie, to keep Willow company. Kiki didn’t seem to
A teenager’s view of moving abroad
mind, and our entire family has lived happily since we bought him. My sister in
I do wonder quite often what would have happened to me if our family had never
England worked hard and things went well for her even with her family in Spain,
decided to move to Spain. I’ve now lived more of my life in Spain than I ever did
and my brother has finished his iGCSE’s and has gotten great results. As for me,
in Britain. I can’t say I have a perfect memory of how my six-year-long life was in
I’m starting my first important exams next year. Every year I’m excited to what
England, but I know for certain that I love the life I live now.
might happen; whether it’s performing on my guitar or my acting, to getting the
Eight years ago, in the year 2003, my family decided to move to sunny Spain.
best results I can manage and while keeping enthralled in my English.
I remember vaguely saying goodbye to my best friend, but I was just six years
What I’ve learnt here in Spain is that there are very few countries that are as
old at the time. I was a little confused to tell you the truth. I had been on holiday
good with children or as good for children. I’m still keeping up with the English
abroad before, but now we were going to live in a country I barely knew about!
curriculum in my school while being fluent in a foreign language at the same
I felt excited, a whole new life opening up before me. I was leaving the coastal
time. I have developed a passion for sport, in particular football, and I have taken
city of Plymouth for the warm, Spanish sun of Alicante. We headed off with all
up both guitar and drama. I hope this shows that Spain has so many opportuni-
our prized possessions, including our cat, Kiki, and we left my older sister behind
ties for all children, no matter what they want to do. I love my life in Spain and
as she went to university. Leaving Plymouth at such a young age meant I never
never, not even once, have I ever wanted to return to Britain.
really missed it. I was too young to remember how life was over there, but I’m
By Michael Saliba (Aged 14) was interviwed by Dave Bull for MASA International
definitely sure that my life in Spain is better.
who are experts in the sale of property in Spain
We settled in the mountainous town of Onil first. We only rented the house, but
You can follow the adventures of Dave Bull in Spain by following @DavejBull on
it was a nice introduction to Spain. We had a pool, something that we would
never have owned in Plymouth, and the weather was warm for a change! There were the odd problem or two, namely living a fair distance from our school, but I enjoyed it nonetheless and I made some good friends immediately. Of my three first friends, I’m proud to say I still know them all today. After living there for a little less than three months, we moved to Matola, near
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Bavarian One glass has 10 cl of tonic water and another 10 cl of Gin. Pour 3 cl of tonic into the glass with Gin and after mixing thoroughly, pour 3 cl of the mixture back into the glass with tonic water. Is there more tonic in the glass of Gin or more Gin in the glass of tonic? Answer below. There is exactly as much tonic in the glass of fernet as there is fernet in the glass of tonic.
1 Dock (5) 4 Sore (7) 8 Rubbish (7) 9 Sacred song (5) 10 Boulders (5) 11 Sincere (7) 12 Real (6) 14 Blemished (6) 17 Ancient Japanese warrior (7) 19 Concur (5) 21 Ashen (5) 22 Before (7) 23 Least difficult (7) 24 Viper (5)
1 Bet (5) 2 Fruit (7) 3 Emblems (5) 4 Fragments (6) 5 Endanger (7) 6 Fire (5) 7 Restricted (7) 12 Relieve of blame (7) 13 Abbreviate (7) 15 Concerned (7) 16 Straightforward (6) 18 Relocates (5) 19 Main artery (5) 20 Mistake (5)
Riddles - Answers below •Why can’t a man living in the USA be buried in Canada? •Is it legal for a man in California to marry his widow’s sister? Why? •A man builds a house rectangular in shape. All the sides have southern exposure. A big bear walks by. What color is the bear? Why? •If there are 3 apples and you take away 2, how many do you have? •How far can a dog run into the woods? •One big hockey fan claimed to be able to tell the score before any game. How did he do it? •You can start a fire if you have alcohol, petrol, kerosene, paper, candle, coke, a full matchbox and a piece of cotton wool. What is the first thing you light? •Why do Chinese men eat more rice than Japanese men do? •What word describes a woman who does not have all her fingers on one hand? Cost of War Here’s a variation on a famous puzzle by Lewis Carroll, who wrote Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. A group of 100 soldiers suffered the following injuries in a battle: 70 soldiers lost an eye, 75 lost an ear, 85 lost a leg, and 80 lost an arm. What is the minimum number of soldiers who must have lost all 4? Answers: •Why should a living man be buried? •No, it is not legal to get married if you are dead. •The bear is white since the house is built on the North Pole. •If you take 2 apples, then you have of course 2. •The dog can run into the woods only to the half of the wood – than it would run out of the woods. •The score before any hockey game should be 0:0, shouldn’t it? •A match, of course. •There are more Chinese men than Japanese men. •Normal – I wouldn’t be very happy if I had all my fingers (10) on one hand. Add up all the injuries, and you find that 100 soldiers suffered a total of 310 injuries. That total means that, at a minimum, 100 soldiers (Edit: it is, of course, not 100 soldiers, but 100 as calculation from 310 person-injuries out of 400 possible) lost 3 body parts, and 10 (the remainder when dividing 310 by 100) must have lost all 4 body parts. (In reality, as many as 70 may have lost all 4 body parts.) Edit: another way to solve it is to draw a line of 100 parts and compare injuries from opposite ends of the line, finding the intersection part of all 4 injuries. If left side of line (LS), right side (RS) and intersection (I), then: 70 (LS) and 75 (RS), then 45 (I) 45 (LS) and 85 (RS), then 30 (I) 30 (LS) and 80 (RS), then 10 (I) soldiers must have lost all 4 parts
RED? all BORED? all BORED? all BORED? all BORED? all
all BORED? all BORED? all BORED? all BO
Twins Two girls were born to the same mother, on the same day, at the same time, in the same month and year and yet they’re not twins. How can this be? Answer below The two babies are two of a set of triplets.
BORED? all BOR.ED? all BORED? all BOR Easy...ish
It's a toughy!
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‘aving a laugh... CRUCIAL QUESTIONS A paraprosdokian is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected in a way that causes the reader or listener to reframe or reinterpret the first part. It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect, sometimes producing an anticlimax. For this reason, it is extremely popular among comedians and satirists. 1 Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car. 2 The last thing I want to do is hurt you, but it’s still on the list. 3. If I agreed with you, we’d both be wrong. (I have to remember this one) 4 We never really grow up, we only learn how to act in public. 5 War does not determine who is right - only who is left. *** 6 Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad. 7 Evening news is where they begin with ‘Good evening’, and then proceed to tell you why it isn’t. 8. To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; To steal from many is research. 9 A bus station is where a bus stops. A train station is where a train stops. On my desk, I have a work station. 10 Dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool and throw them fish. 11 I thought I wanted a career, turns out I just wanted pay cheques. 12. A bank is a place that will lend you money, if you can prove that you don’t need it. 13 Whenever I fill out an application, in the part that says “In an emergency, notify:” I put “DOCTOR”. 14 I didn’t say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.
Can you cry under water? have How important does a person red side con are to be before they assassinated instead of just mur ed? der get Once you’re in heaven, do you e wer you hes clot the stuck wearing ? nity eter for in buried in a Why does a round pizza come square box? actuWhat disease did cured ham ally have? the How is it that we put man on would it out red figu we re moon befo on els whe put to idea d goo a be luggage? ‘slept Why is it that people say they e up wak ies bab n whe y’ bab a like like every two hours? ’re Why are you IN a movie, but you ON TV? Why do people pay to go up tall in buildings and then put money the on gs thin at look to rs binocula ? und gro m Why do doctors leave the roo g goin y’re The ? nge while you cha ... way any ed nak you to see ties’ Why is ‘bra’ singular and ‘pan plural? a setWhy do toasters always have hor a to ting that burns the toast an hum ent dec no rible crisp, which eat? ld being wou one If Jimmy cracks corn and no g son id stup a cares, why is there about him? while Why does Goofy stand erect y’re The rs? Pluto remains on all fou both dogs! and If corn oil is made from corn, etavegetable oil is made from veg ? from e mad oil y bles, what is bab , nkle Twi and g son et hab Do the Alp e sam Twinkle Little Star have the
A wife is helping her husband... ...installing his computer, then having completed that successfully, she said that he now should have a password that he would easily remember, so that he would be able to use his computer when it asked him his password. Being a bit of a Heman, he winks at his wife and says “penis”, as he enters the password and presses the mouse button, his wife bursts into a hysterical fit of laughter... The computer responded: “Too Short” “Entry Refused” No matter what your job, you can always try and make the most of it ....
tune? two Why did you just try singing the ve? abo gs son
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PUN INTENDED 1. Two antennas met on a roof, fell in love and got married. The ceremony wasn’t much, but the reception was excellent. 2. A jumper cable walks into a bar. The bartender says, “I’ll serve you, but don’t start anything.” 3. Two peanuts walk into a bar, and one was a salted. 4. A dysle xic man walks into a bra. 5. A man walks into a bar with a slab of asphalt under his arm and says: “A beer please, and one for the road.” 6. Two cannibals are eating a clown. One says to the other: “Does this taste funny to you?” 7. “Doc, I can’t stop singing ‘The Green, Green Grass of Home.’” “That sounds like Tom Jones Syndrome.” “Is it common?” Well, “It’s Not Unusual.”
French brea st implant company P Confucius did NOT say.... IP, a to remove th re going ousands of Man who wants pretty nurse, u s e le ss tits. must be patient. You hang in there sunPassionate kiss, like spider shine... web, leads to undoing of fly. I won’t tell them where Wee Billy from Glesga always wanted to y o u li ve... Lady who goes camping must look cool.
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Squirrel who runs up woman’s leg will not find nuts. Man who leaps off cliff jumps to conclusion. Man who runs in front of car gets tired, man who runs behind car gets exhausted. Man who eats many prunes get good run for money. War does not determine who is right, it determines who is left. Man who fight with wife all day get no piece at night. It takes many nails to build a crib, but only one screw to fill it. Man who drives like hell is bound to get there. Man who stands on toilet is high on pot. Man who live in glass house should change clothes in basement. Man who fish in other man’s well often catch crabs. Finally, Confucius DID say... “A lion will not cheat on his wife, but a Tiger Wood!”
Heard on local radio today why did the chicken cross the road? Because, it was stuck up Anthony Worral Thompson’s jumper...
During sex, you burn off as much calories, as running for 8 kilometres. Who the hell runs 8 kilometres, in thirty seconds ? ONIONS & CHRISTMAS TREES A family is at the dinner table. The son asks his father, ‘Dad, how many kinds of boobs are there? The father, surprised, answers, ‘Well, son, there are three kinds of Boobs: In her 20’s, a woman’s are like melons, round and firm. In her 30’s to 40’s, they are like pears, still nice but hanging a bit. After 50, they are like onions’. ‘Onions?’ ‘Yes, you see them and they make you cry.’ This infuriated his wife and daughter so the daughter said, ‘Mum, how many kinds of ‘willies’ are there?. The mother, surprised, smiles and answers, ‘Well dear, a man goes through three phases. In his 20’s, his willy is like an oak tree: mighty and hard. In his 30’s and 40’s, it is like a birch: flexible but reliable. After his 50’s, it is like a Christmas Tree.’ ‘A Christmas tree?’ ‘Yes - the root’s dead and the balls are just for decoration.
His friend told him that he needed a good designer pair of trainers to go with his shell suit. Billy saved up all his Giros and all the money he got back from returning his empty bottles of Ginger and finally managed to get himself a pair of brilliant white trainers to go with his shell suit. Proudly, he strutted down the street calling out to all the passers by “See ma new trainers? Stonkin, eh?” One fine upstanding gentleman pointed out that they were indeed a fine pair of trainers but was young Billy aware that he had a lace undone? Billy scornfully retorted that it was part of being cool to have a trailing lace and that on the sole of the trainer there were instructions for the wearer to do such a thing. When asked for proof of this instruction, Billy look off his trainer and held it upside down for the disbeliever to read. “There y’are! It clearly says ....Taiwan !!!!!
From the diary of a Preschool Teacher: My five-year old students are learning to read. Yesterday one of them pointed at a picture in a zoo book and said, “Look at this! It’s a frickin’ elephant!” I took a deep breath, then asked...”What did you call it?” “It’s a frickin’ elephant! It says so on the picture!” And so it does....
“ A f r i c a n Elephant “ 37
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