Sort of a surreal day here in Ribeira Brava yesterday, hot and sunny with my shaded thermometer showing 26ºC (whilst the maximum forecast for Funchal was a miserly 21ºC). The sea was like a mill pond. I went out into town at lunchtime for my daily stroll, and the Xmas music was still playing in the streets … some sort of country & western Christmas album, including that old favourite ‘Cowboy Christmas’ (!).
Add to that that the town’s impressive display of Xmas lights were still up, and the shops still have Santa’s, Xmas trees, decorations and flashing lights in the windows … quite a strange feeling.
So inspired was I by the weather, that I actually went out and cleaned the windows, which was well overdue owing to fact that we get sandy rain here at times … and yes, I do clean things sometimes believe it or not, so that’s not the surreal bit … Many thanks to the person who invented PVC windows that lift out of their frames for easy cleaning at great heights.
Source : Diário de Notícias 10/1/2008
I did a blog late last year about the decision to give out the Journal newspaper free in the new year, and it’s happened. I don’t read the Journal often, as it’s practically owned by the government, it cannot really be inpartial unbiased reporting … Anyway, the only other newspaper, the Diário, is inviting readers comments based on the fact that the Journal is indirectly being funded with taxpapers money, probably being a little cheesed-off (understandably) with the impact on their own sales.
In today’s Diário, front page is the news that the Savoy Hotel has been granted planning permission to extend from the existing 10 floors to 16 floors. You would think that after the National Geographic Magazine had indirectly slated the west side of Funchal as being a concrete jungle, that this sort of thing wouldn’t happen. I wonder what palm greasing was necessary to get that one through! See picture above to gauge the impact on Funchal’s skyline.
Rather strangely, the political pages are totally empty today … long may it continue! However, in the Economy section the goverment of Madeira gets a well deserved slating, as apparently the costs of government and public administration here work out at 9 times the cost of our counterparts in mainland Portugal.