Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The dregs linger!

The stain is still there.

I have to say I think it looks quite artistic.  Given my interest in what might loosely be called Modern Art, it is amazing how many isms, movements, happenings, installations, genres, and categories my gestural wine-inspired-broken-bottled artwork fits.  I am mostly impressed that it seems to have certain anthropomorphic elements, and I feel that in its lightly silhouetted form there is a certain reference to Michelangelo’s sculptural Dying Slave series or even elements of a Pieta.  Bear in mind when you look at this stain/artwork that it is on a pavement, and it is only the fact that I have rotated the image that makes it appear as though it is on a wall.  I would emphasise that The Stain is a result of an accident and not my hurling the bottle at some wall in an excess of snobbery at the quality of the wine!

It has now survived one whole day.  Normally, in July, here in Catalonia, I would be fairly confident that it could survive the whole summer, but this month, so far,  has been a trifle frisky as far as the weather is concerned.  I mean it is sunny at the moment, but we have had pesky clouds filtering and dulling the normal direct sunlight that we have come to expect from summer months.  Still, even with the element of unpredictability, I think that my work will adorn the pavement for some time to come!


Even after all the time that I have spent in Catalonia, I am still confused by house numbers.  The lack of discernable logic in that you would expect from numbering, that is, as part of its essential nature, sequential, is often lacking in this part of the world.  Even the even numbers on one side or the road and odd on the other is not always strictly adhered to and expecting 14 to be opposite 13 is very often something of a long shot in some parts of the town.

So really I only have myself to blame for trying to go to a ‘Medical Centre’ in a block of private flats.  In my defence the flats did have the number that I was looking for and there was no indication of anything else that would fit.  So I attempted to get in.

This was a problem as none of the buzzers had a number remotely like the ‘door’ number I had been given for my open appointment for a retina scan.  Eventually, a Little Old Lady emerged as a result (I assumed) of my knocking.  I was wrong, and it was merely a coincidence that she emerged when she did.  However, I marched in and found myself confronted by another locked door.  The Little Old Lady had, by this time exited the building and I was left wondering what my next step was going to be.  While I was pondering the Little Old Lady reappeared and was clutching a ring of keys.  She then, ineffectually, tried to open the inner door and eventually gave the keys to me.  I opened it at once, to her delight and I went through and the Little Old Lady immediately disappeared again.

Up some rather dim and foreboding stairs to a series of doors that were numbered up to 5.  Not 9 - that was the door that I was looking for.  Further exploration to higher floors revealed that the layout and numbering was exactly the same.  No 9.

Having found a light switch, which merely helped to illuminate the lack of the requisite door, I stumbled my way down the stairs (the light having gone off) and decided to exit and explore.

Where, of course, I found that a completely separate building next to the block of flats had a humiliatingly large sign telling me that the medical facility I needed was the one that I had ignored in favour of the unprepossessing domestic door that I had chosen as the appropriate entrance to my destination.

Door 9 found.  No response.  The gum-chewing receptionist that I had been told to ignore told me to wait, which I did for a very short period of time before I was whisked out of a crowded waiting room and into a machine-stuffed consulting room.

I think that the only difference with this retina scan from others that I have had with an ordinary optician was this one was lined to a computer.  Ditto the ultra sound scan of my eyes that I had.  Although this one was accompanied by smearing my eyelids with some sort of cream and then moving a scanner pressing onto the skin of my lids.  In no way was it painful, but in no way was it pleasant either.

I know have to wait until tomorrow for the full results of the scans, but the doctor was able to reassure me that things looked normal.  Which of course begs the question of why a small piece of translucent gauze seems to sweep its way across my eye from time to time.  Research (i.e. putting a phrase into Google) revealed that what I am suffering from is a part of ageing, especially of those with short sight.  The advice and treatment seemed to be of the “get used to it” approach because all of the surgical interventions seemed almost barbarically horrific.  But as I have been more-or-less irritated with my eyes and my eyesight for the last sixty years of my life, I am sure it is something I can get used to living with.  And anyway the relief at finding out that it is nothing more than normal-ish ageing is reward enough to be going on with for the moment!


As today is Tuesday, it is The Card Place for lunch.  The Card Place is of course notable for having nothing to do with cards, the designation is merely a reference to the long and distant past when the restaurant was under a different owner.  Nowadays each Tuesday is our opportunity to recognize the quality and value of the food that we invariably get there!  The name of the restaurant is Restaurante Els Fogons de L’Avia, Carrer Antic Camí Ral de València, 38, 08860 here in Castelldefels.  In our opinion this is the best value for money in town and well worth trying.  An extra inducement for my patronage is that I get a personally mixed sauce to accompany my meal whose spiciness is well beyond the normal Spanish range of acceptability.  It is the sort of spicy sauce that augments the food without hiding it in pain!  Delicious!


Still no final result from my Open University Spanish course.  The release date for the results is the 19th of July, so still a week officially, but the results usually get to use before the stated date.  I keep checking my emails!


Meanwhile, if you want to enter my little competition to guess the date by which The Stain will have disappeared from the footpath over the motorway, do contact me with your estimate and your email address.  There will be a prize for the person nearest!

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