Category: Other bits and bobs


Yesterday I came across a slug out walking the dogs. I realise, on re-reading this first sentence, that it is open to misinterpretation so let me state plainly that it was me out walking the dogs and not the slug. The slug just happened to be crossing the dirt track which links two sections of roughly-paved road. The track itself is little used. In the recent rains it becomes very slippery and so vehicles tend to keep off it and, as a result, plants grow freely down the middle. Continue reading

I have just come back from the river after spending a very fine afternoon fishing with Paul Reddish. Paul is excellent company and is a very accomplished fly fisherman. Today we were accompanied by Paul´s wife Fiona and her sister Shona who is over from Australia. Continue reading

On Thursday I opened my annual account with the carp on my local river, the Guadalhorce. I made a single withdrawal of what I imagine was about five pounds, or maybe a little more. It was a typically spirited fish and slugged it out like a heavyweight before I managed to ease into the bankside shallows and beach it. Continue reading

Pissing Rain

It´s been pissing rain here on and off for over a week. Rain, rain, rain. Please don´t think I´m complaining because here, in the arid south of Spain, rain is manna from heaven. We had been worried here that reservoir levels have been steadily falling and local farmers were thinking that prospects were bleak.  Now these guys must be joyfully beckoning each dark bank of rainclouds, as farmers have been doing for longer than anyone can remember. Continue reading

On Saturday a bunch of us went on a long walk that took us to the top of a mountain called La Concha. All told, we covered about 17km over pretty unforgiving terrain, often in single file. I suppose you should work on your fitness before such an undertaking but I thought it best to prepare by sitting on the sofa with my father in law and watching Bear Grylls on the telly!

Bear Grylls tells us that drinking urine is a convenient substitute for coffee when out in the wilderness and there is nowhere to plug in a kettle (and of course it has no caffeine!) and that eating rabbit droppings is just a simple question of mind over matter: just pop them in your mouth and imagine they´re maltesers! Continue reading

The Spanish TV program that featured John Langridge and myself fishing on the Guadalhorce was aired a little while back and I put a link on the blog to allow people to see it. That link appears to have been deactivated in some way but Colin McLachlan tells me that it is now up and running once again. Here it is if you would like to have a look:

http://www.rtve.es/alacarta/videos/jara-y-sedal/jara-sedal-barbos-del-guadalhorce/4310751/

Please let me know if you try it and it doesn´t work. Assuming it does I hope you enjoy it!

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The program features gypsy barbel fishing in Malaga´s Río Guadalhorce.

 

Grandad gave me a hat for Christmas. It is the kind of hat a Yorkshire sheep farmer might wear and Grandad has one just like it himself. Grandad has only a modest sprinkling of hair on his head and tells me that it is a great hat for keeping your head warm.

I was delighted with the hat and can vouch for its head-warming effectiveness having now taken it for several test outings in and around London. It even sailed through the wind test which involves walking along Wimbledon High Street in storm force conditions without the hat taking to the air. Continue reading

This morning Catriona and I took Pippa to Euston station for her journey back to university in Glasgow. Not wanting to miss the opportunities available in the heart of London, we discussed places that we might visit. On account of it being my birthday, I was offered the casting vote and decided that we ought to go whale watching.

“Hope” is the name given to the 22 metre blue whale skeleton displayed in the Hintze Hall of the Natural History Museum. She is a real show stopper. She was stranded in Wexford Harbour in Ireland in 1891 and was bought by the museum which was only 10 years old at that time.  She is the only whale skeleton in the world to be displayed in a diving lunge feeding position and has been the headline act here since July 2017 when this amazing display was revealed to the public for the first time. Continue reading

I don´t know about you but I´ve spent the Christmas period sitting on my arse with my feet up on the coffee table. I noticed that some idiot left an open box of Quality Street lying around. They won´t do that again in a hurry!

This shameful self-indulgence is tolerated and even encouraged at this time of year and usually acts as a catalyst to sign up to healthy new year´s resolution like marathon running, cross-channel swimming, mountain climbing or at least taking the dogs for a walk. Continue reading

One of the great benefits of the blog, as far as I´m concerned, is that it has introduced me to a new extended family made up of other fly fishermen and like-minded souls. Many live overseas and have been in touch from time to time. Others I have had a chance to meet up with in person, often on the river bank. Continue reading