Caught in Tenerife’s Sporting Web

Shaking off my CD Tenerife hangover, the last few days have been a pleasant whirl of activity. Yesterday morning walking down Cardiac Hill to Los Cristianos, I ran into the GB Indoor Volleyball squad, over for a weeks training camp. Accosting the coach, I arranged to pop down in the evening to the local sports hall to do a piece on them. They were over a year ago, they get little funding and have to train hard, if you want to see what secrets the coach served up, check out .

These things always come in little groups and today I was off to La Laguna to interview New York born basketball player Randall Hanke, a recent signing for Socas Canarias in the Second Division of the Spanish League. The day started with a scrum down for the 111 Titsa bus from Los Cristianos to Santa Cruz, why do people tut tut and moan when waiting for a bus and then when it arrives suddenly discover they haven’t got change, a bus ticket, a brain, or all three. Anyway, even though this was not the direct 110, even the detour to Reina Sofia airport barely dented the hours journey, not bad for 4.70 on my bono ticket.

Arriving in a hot, sunny capital, I changed to the tram, free as my bono was still warm, and glided the 30 minutes up to La Laguna. There are not often ticket inspectors around but a few got on today and yanked one dodgy customer off at a halfway station for an interrogation, it could end in a 400 euro fine, so beware.  A sweet young lady sat opposite me rummaged through her wallet to find her ticket and in the process revealed a CD Tenerife season ticket – sadly she got off before I could propose marriage.

I was a bit behind schedule but a frantic scamper across La Laguna and I pitched up at the Juan Rios Tejera sports hall a very acceptable 10 minutes late. Marcos the press officer was waiting with the towering 6 foot 11 Randall, who rescued his number 12 vest from the laundry and we went through, Randall stooping slightly, onto the court so I could snap some pics. Randall has dual nationality due to a English father and has played for Great Britain and moved recently from Glasgow Rocks. If you want to delve further into the sport, see the full article at .

With a notebook full of scribble that a doctor would struggle to read, I headed down into central La Laguna stopping for a snack. Most of the centre was pretty quiet, the nearby University pupils would be studying and many more were wisely shading from the heat. I managed to load up with some brochures for the upcoming Easter week (semana santa) a big event on the calender that will see La Laguna re-enacting the Passion and a host of other big religious events. I was upset not to see the new super dooper pooper scooper around the streets. I read in the morning paper that the council had bought this state of the art moped with suction pipes attached to swallow up the walnut whips that our four legged friends leave behind, maybe next time.

Tramming back down to Santa Cruz, had to pay a euro this time, I grabbed some food and headed for El Tanque Cultural Space where they have a new exhibition called Scanner. If you scroll back a few posts you will see the gong show I saw there recently, this new work by Madrid born Daniel Canogar proved to be equally bizarre. The huge dark interior of the old oil tank was strewn with a spiders web of electriacl cables and two video projectors. The result was a pulsating light show which seemed like thoughts sparking inside a giant brain, too many to be mine. In the dark I heard a scraping sound and saw a shape looming. Not sure if it was part of the show my guts did a few somersaults before I realised it was a caretaker with a trolley of rubbish-phew.

Scanner is on until 9 May before moving to the New York Science Museum, it opens from noon to 8pm Monday to Saturday and 11am to 2pm Sunday and is FREE. It’s just 5 minutes walk from the bus station and El Corte Ingles and worth a detour for a good helping of weirdness. Leaving the cool eerie charged air behind I headed for my 110 direct Titsa bus back to the south.