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Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Island Life

The weather is improving. A south-west wind today which means it will rain tonight. Meantime the sun is coming out and should lead to a perfect afternoon as yesterday. The island is full of spur-of-the minute tourists, fleeing the English freeze-up. Had they come with those who came last week - half-term, poor buggers - they might have regretted it.

Handsome from Blackburn came back this morning. He's been off sick for over a week and shouldn't be here now. He's got a thick chest and a weeping ear, but says it does him good to get out. He doesn't manage to get to the mess in the front where there are two half-built sheltered areas. The dust, the breeze-blocks the concrete-mixers remain as is. Meantime Nieves' the cleaner's husband plus his brother-in-law comes round to check the broken skylight over the sitting-room. If the job costs more than 200 euros and the insurance company have to be involved he can't do the job because he's moonlighting so won't provide an estimate. Granny and Beloved are left waiting - again - for the glass-supplier to give his verdict. Otherwise Mr Cleaner's Husband will find someone else to do it. AT LAST. It's taken all of two months so far. This is how it is here, particularly if you're having to deal with dialect which leaves out all the consonants. (Thank goodness for sudden arrival and help of the Lady with the Dogs.)

Granny went down to the coast then to take the Attic Woman out to coffee. The cooks from the restaurants were all out on the fore-shore in their check trousers, gutting fish, the usual array of swooping, screaming gulls in attendance, fighting over the spoils. Granny meantime was talking nostalgia with the Attic Woman - this is often the easier form of conversation. It was nice in a funny way. Sad but as it should be.

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