Archive for November, 2007
Elton John, that’s the ticket

After a couple of jittery weeks, the good news is that it’s all systems go for the Elton John concert at Golf Costa Adeje on January 24. Tickets are now on sale and the official Elton John website is now showing the correct venue rather than the short lived choice of the Olympic Stadium, Arona.

Just a reminder, the show begins at 9pm and tickets are 35 euros to stand or 90€ and 120€ for the seats. The Elton John website has started to sell tickets to Rocket Club members and the general public will soon follow. If you are in Tenerife, they can also be bought from El Corte Ingles department store in Santa Cruz, Repsol garages and Caja Canarias cash machines, and of course there is the phoneline 902056492.  Otherwise try or there is a new website from the concert organisers Fingers crossed, it should be just the thing that Tenerife needs to restore some confidence in staging big events.

I see that Keane have a new live concert DVD out for christmas, apparently with the Tenerife version, when you open the box it’s empty!

Christmas is a load of…..

Bah humbug, it’s that time of year again, well it seems to have been for ages, even here in Tenerife, the street decorations went up in October, so much for mañana. Yes the shops here are brimming with awful decorations and the cheap Todo shops have those horrible singing Santa’s outside.

 One Spanish tradition that always makes me laugh like a drain is El Caganer, the shitter on the nativity scene. This is a Catalan tradition which has some genuine meaning to do with regeneration of the soil but is also good fun. It started with a shepherd on the scene around the stable, squatting down to make a deposit, but now there are loads of Celebrity Caganers you can buy including royalty and politicians.

Thierry HenryÂ

Thierry Henry, now plying his trade for Barcelona, is the latest addition and costs 14 euros from all you have to do is log on, as they say.  Christmas hasn’t really arrived though for me until the 3 Kings start to appear on the Dorada beer bottle labels. Aah isn’t tradition wonderful.

CD Tenerife turn it on in 3-1 home win

NinoWe suffer a lot following CDT but a game like this makes it all worth while, good football, well taken goals and a deserved win, 3-1 over Xerez.

Tenerife came out firing and after 5 minutes Ricardo hammered a great shot into the visitors net to make it 1-0. It was one way traffic with Tenerife stroking the ball around and a second goal had to come. After 23 minutes, Iriome, showing the form that propelled him to golden prospect status last season, grabbed a second to delight the 10,651 fans.

Tenerife were hit by an early penalty for Xerez at the start of the second half, Bertran adjudged to be the offender. Yordi scored from the spot to reduce the home lead when Xerez had hardly threatened.

This is the part where Tenerife usually let it slip but in spite of the referee losing the plot, Tenerife kept their composure. Iriome went close with a good header, Santos had a decent penalty shout refused but Nino wrapped the game up. On the 70 minute mark Nino was bearing down on goal with 3 defenders to beat, some nifty footwork saw him through and he slotted the ball home.

A great and much needed result, lets hope we can put a run together now and climb the table.

Where mans reach exceeds his grasp


Normally if I want to observe heavenly bodies I head for the beach, but earlier this year, on a trip to the island of La Palma, I had the chance to take the guided tour of the observatory at Roque de los Muchachos, 2,400 metres up. There are 14 telescopes up there, and you can read all about them in my feature (page 24) in the latest Think Spain Today.

If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s the first weekly national English language newspaper for the whole of Spain and it’s islands. It hits the shops every Friday, but takes a day later to reach the Canary Islands, and is just 2 euros. As well as a feature each month I will also be chipping in news stories from around all 7 islands each week.

OK advert over, back to La Palma. The observatory tours are few and far between but the website of the Institute of Canarian Astrophysics will keep you informed of La Palma and the Tenerife observatory.

La Palma is well worth a visit anyway, it’s not called the Beautiful Island for no reason. Lush and green, it boasts the Los Tilos biosphere park, the last Canarian volcano to blow (1971) at Teneguia, and some great walks and historic churches.

Truly Oarsome adventures

Sunset row

If, like me, your idea of taming the Atlantic consists of downing several bottles of beer on the Fred OIsen ferry, the thought of rowing 2,900 miles from Tenerife to Antigua in something resembling a floating coffin, will fill you with dread. So it is with great admiration I am getting involved in the rowing season in a purely, lazy git stood on the side with notebook and camera sort of way.

Row BoatPeter Raab and Tim Wilks will set off from Puerto Colon on Saturday Decmber 8 in their attempt to defy nature. I have been following their build up and you can read all about it in the islands top newspaper, The Tenerife Sun look for features, free from 300 outlets around the island, or there’s more in the form of my blogs for Freebird. And talking of Freebird, they are one of the sponsors for Peter and Tim’s crossing as the duo aim to raise money for Los Cristianos based charity Orobal who bring comfort and quality of life to mentally and physically handicapped youngsters. There will be a big charity day on Sunday November 25 starting with a 2 hour catamarran sailing with food and drink from Puerto Colon followed by a BBQ at Monkey Beach Club, Las Americas. Tickets are just €25 for adults and €10 for children, first child goes free. Call Freephone 900714189 or book online at

New launch pad for Rocket Man Elton ?

It looks like Elton John is heading for Tenerife after all with a January 24 concert at the Costa Adeje golf course, but of course things never run to plan here. The original announcement had the concert set for the Olympic football stadium in Las Americas and that was confirmed on the Elton John official website. Within hours though the venue was changed to the Costa Adeje golf course due to work being done on the football stadium in January, didn’t they know this at the time of booking?

Anyway lets hope and assume that Elton’s people are aware of the change and have agreed to it. There is a special phoneline to call to pre order, BUT not buy tickets as yet, call 902056492. Prices are 35 euros for the basic seats, 90 euros for better ones and 120 euros for the V.I.P front row. The venue will be selling 25,000 tickets.

It’s all more embarrasment for Santa Cruz council after deputy mayor, Angel Llanos, announced months ago at a press conference with the promotors, that Elton would play the dockside in Santa Cruz on November 17. This was never confirmed by Elton John’s people who eventually had to issue a denial of any such concert. Despite this Angel Llanos has sinced announced his intention to have Elton perform at the Recinto Ferial in Santa Cruz in March. The new move has pulled the rug (sorry Elton, no pun intended) from under his feet.

Let’s hope it is all plain sailing from here as we can’t afford another musical cock up on the island.

Ta ra Chuck

Chuck BerryÂ

So near and so far. I was hoping to reveal big news of Chuck Berry playing live in Santa Cruz on Monday November 26 but sadly it looks like it has all fallen through.

Before you ask, yes he is still alive, he turned 81 last month and is on a major tour. I heard mention of him coming here a few weeks ago and last week the Canary dates appeared on his official website but they have now been withdrawn. It was to be the Guimera Thetre in Santa Cruz on 26 and the Cuyas theatre in Las Palmas the next night. Chuck is playing in Burgos, mainland Spain on Sunday 25 November.

Not sure what really happened on this, the Las Palmas theatre has Fame, the musical on the night he was supposed to appear, the Guimera has a free night but when I called them, they had no knowledge of any concert and it has never appeared on their listings.

There is certainly no blame attached here as it was never officially announced, sounds like an ambitious plan that didn’t quite make it. There are still rumblings out there on the net on some Spanish sites and suggestions that he may come at a later date, if I find out more, you will see it here. Rock on Chuck.Â

Closing the stable door…

Many of you may have noticed a big clamp down going on across Tenerife over the last month to 6 weeks. The police are out every night with the Gruas, moving cars from the daft places they have always obstructed. Bar and restaurant PR’s have been pushed back onto their property , new standardised umbrellas and awnings have been imposed on bars, Unelco have flexed their muscles, taken out their power junction boxes and closed bars and now illegally moored boats have been turfed out of Los Cristianos harbour, although some have only moved a short way and stand off Las Vistas beach.

As a cynical old git who doesn’t believe in coincidence, may I point out that this has all happened since the government have started to issue realistic tourism figures that show the mess Tenerife and the other Canary Islands are in. It seems the word has been passed down from on high to tighten up on all those small infringements of the law that have been overlooked for years.

You can expect another stamp of authority at the end of this month when hundreds of ABTA (Association of British Travel Agents) reps arrive on Tenerife for their annual conference. The British market has been falling more than any other, September figures show an 11 % drop in Brits on the previous year and this week more stats show the Canary Islands have lost One Million foreign tourists between 2001 and 2006.

Just a little insight into how the tourism department works. This Monday, both airports were due to start handing out little boxes of 3 bananas to all tourists coming in, complete with useful tourist information. Some news sources even said the promotion had been running already for a few weeks. I went to Reina Sofia on Monday to get a nice pic for Think Spain Today and yes, they had no bananas. I was told the promotion is now not starting until today, Thursday, we shall see. I’m sure those tourists wont miss their free bananas but it was a nice idea and at least showed some imagination but as always it was poorly carried out.

CDT lose the derby 2-2

Well it felt like a loss, Tenerife at home to a Las Palmas team rooted to the bottom of the league and unable to score goals away from home. but still CDT let the lead slip twice in a poor game between two poor looking sides.

Tenerife had the perfect start with a goal after 7 minutes, an Ayoze corner was helped on by Santos to Nino who grabbed his chance. that should have been the springboard for an all out assault on the Pios but it never came and they crept back in after 18 minutes with a goal from Darino. Neither side really took hold of the game and Tenerife seemed strangely lacking in hunger.

Into the second half and Ayoze set up another home goal from a corner, this time Culebras was on hand and the 17,693 crowd went wild. The killer touch was missing again and after 70 minutes the Pios tied it again, this time with an Adrian goal.

A big let down for the home fans, we seem to be in a bit of a rut at the moment and although we are on an unbeaten run, we can’t seem to win. There is already talk in the local papers of 2 new signings in the transfer window but hopefully the team can sort themselves out before then.