Saturday, October 28, 2017

What time is it ?

Well, the answer is simple: It's that time of the year again, when clocks go mad and people like me get confused. The sun still rises and sets when it wants to, but somehow at a different time. Well, the recommended procedure for tonight's ritual is to put all your clocks and watches upside down very early this Sunday morning - so don't forget to set your alarm clock to ring at 3 am, by when it will weirdly be 'already' 2 am, to do this. To avoid complications and  repercussions make sure you don't leave any clock unturned before you go back to bed after hours of searching and upturning. Most importantly, don't even think about getting up at all on Sunday. Then from Monday on keep asking people ''What time is it now'' as if nothing had happened for about a week, just to help get the discussion going. After a further ten days of time-related discourse and debating this clock-up a general consensus should have been arrived at and the correct new time agreed upon. Your internal clock will have adjusted a bit to things like disrupted sleep patterns, confused meal times, etc., while your digestive system is still struggling. Now the time has come to turn your clocks and watches back the right way and set the new time - if they're still running that is. Should they have stopped you can just leave them there until March 25th 2018. If turned back at the right time then, they will miraculously show the correct time for about a minute twice every day until this time next year (or just once per day if it's a 24 hour system - still not bad, though).
Seriously though, how many more years will we have to go through this madness twice annually ? It costs more energy than it is supposed to save, that's for sure. An absurd measure that is running out of time, even if it is useful in providing a readily accepted excuse for turning up late for work, missing appointments, and so on. 

It was hot

Yesterday was another hot day during the current heat wave, producing yet another exhausted shirt. I recorded a top temperature of 33,3 ºC, but it should be a bit 'cooler' with the temperature in the high 20s ºC from today. La Gomera needs rain badly...

Friday, October 27, 2017

Update on the new ferry connections

So now that I've had the pleasure of travelling on the Armas car ferry to Valle Gran Rey, which took just over thirty minutes to get from San Sebastian de La Gomera to Valle Gran Rey, let me tell you that all here in VGR are delighted and the lorry drivers of the the regular delivery services are most happy that they now can have a cup of coffee aboard the ferry instead of driving for up to two hours through the mountains and the national park on narrow winding roads. The HSC Alboran has been refurbished in recent times and all services are of a high standard. The food and drink on offer aboard is of good quality and very competitively priced.
The passenger ferry Benchi Express, which so far has only been running two return sailings daily, has proven a success, too, and over 8.000 passengers have travelled on it in the first few weeks. About two thirds of this number have been locals and the remainder tourists. The Fred. Olsen company has announced that from next week the service which connects the ports of San Sebastian de La Gomera, Playa de Santiago and Valle Gran Rey will begin its winter schedule with three return sailings daily.
Cars bound for VGR boarding in San Seb. de L.G.
The high-speed car ferry Alboran which will connect San Sebastian de L.G. and V.G.R. with Los Cristianos on Tenerife is still in the initial phase of operation and schedules are only issued for the week ahead. Some adjustments have to be made to the docking ramp in San Seb. and some sailings involve changing from the vessel Volcan de Taburiente to the Alboran there, but soon all trips will be direct which will make this the fastest connection from Tenerife to Valle Gran Rey ever.
And now there's a 'well-informed' rumour that the Fred. Olsen company will also bring a high-speed car ferry to Valle Gran Rey. I'll keep you posted...

NOTE: Both ferry services are still frequently adjusting schedules and may experience some 'teething problems', so it is advisable to keep checking their websites before travelling. It is best to book your trip just before intending to travel, or at the port offices prior to departure - until the dust has settled.
Click for UPDATE  
HSC Alboran in San Sebastian de La Gomera 

Despite the Calima...

...there was a beautiful sunset in Valle Gran Rey last night.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

A recipe...

...spotted on the Armas car ferry to La Gomera. More about the ferry connections soon.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Car ferry in Valle Gran Rey

First of all let me apologise for not having posted any updates this week, but the storm resulting from hurricane Ophelia which hit Ireland on Monday left me without broadband internet until this morning. There's another storm named Brian arriving here later today, so I might lose the internet again as all the infrastructure has been weakened by the previous blow...
The big news on La Gomera is that the first ever regular car ferry arrived in Valle Gran Rey yesterday and was open to the public. There were cheers and applause from the local population who'll now be able to bring their cars to Tenerife and back without driving through the mountains and the national park.
The connection will now be served initially by the large high speed catamaran HSC Alboran and not the HSC Volcan de Teno as previously reported. The later vessel is still in Cadiz and rumour has it that this is being held by the Spanish security forces for a possible takeover of Catalonia. They've even commissioned cruise ships...
Anyway the car ferry Alboran, owned and operated by Naviera Armas will now connect Valle Gran Rey with Los Cristianos in about 90 minutes and can be booked on the Armas website and services are to begin from this weekend. More details and to follow soon, if I have got broadband. Here some images from yesterday's presentation of the service (courtesy of Vino Tinto shop in Vueltas). I'm hoping to travel on it soon and also on the new passenger ferry Benchi Express with special posts on this blog to follow...

Friday, October 13, 2017

New ferry connection ''in a few days''

Well, you still can't book the new Naviera Armas car ferry connection from Tenerife to Valle Gran Rey, but the recent post on the company's Facebook page (below) states ''In a few days we start !!!! Valle Gran Rey, welcome to our route network''. However, as of this morning the vessel is still in Cadiz. Hurry up, I want to book...
Ferry Valle Gran Rey poniéndose “guapo”.
En unos dias, comenzamos!!!!!
Valle Gran Rey, bienvenidos a nuestra red de rutas.