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Thread: The Gibraltar Blog

  1. #41
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    Millay will you be crossing the border into Spain or as GIB look on as enemy territory ? I read that Molly Bloom another "Irish Pub" at La Línea de la Concepción could be worth a visit. Take care though with passport and Euros to the ready.

    Last edited by the gasman; 13-08-2012 at 16:28.

  2. #42
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    Millay - I see that there is a guy on the trip advisor site offering helpful tips when visiting Gibraltar - st_vincent or something similar I think. He seems to get around a lot so must have a great desire and passion to travel and drink

  3. #43
    In Search of Ebriety Millay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the gasman View Post
    Millay - I see that there is a guy on the trip advisor site offering helpful tips when visiting Gibraltar - st_vincent or something similar I think. He seems to get around a lot so must have a great desire and passion to travel and drink
    I have to own up to that one. St Vincent is the pseudonym I usually use for travel websites and Millay is the one I use for pub and beer websites. Things can get a bit confusing when I'm travelling to drink beer though
    I've just joined Alcoholics Anonymous - I still drink, just under a different name.

  4. #44
    In Search of Ebriety Millay's Avatar
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    Did the whole tourist thing today, including getting stupidly sunburnt. So I'm now back in the hotel having stood under a cold shower for 10 minutes and slapped on the aftersun. I have a couple of large bottles of water to rehydrate the old body and am watching Kent stuff Warks in the 40 over cricket. I can see this being a lazy evening in but it will give me the opportunity to update the blog and write up some of the pub reviews I've been collecting. I've also got a couple of books with me. I like to read something topical when I go away so at present I am in the middle of Sahara by Michael Palin, the story of his journey across .... well, the Sahara. The other book is by Pete Brown, often referred to as the beer drinker's Bill Bryson. It's called Three Sheets to the Wind with a sub-title of "300 bars in 13 countries, one man's quest for the meaning of beer". Quite appropriate given that, as it was in my suitcase, it's been to more countries than me on this trip.
    I've just joined Alcoholics Anonymous - I still drink, just under a different name.

  5. #45
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    Impressed you have got sunburnt. Good to know you haven't just spent your time skulking around in pubs and bars !

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grailhunter View Post
    Impressed you have got sunburnt. Good to know you haven't just spent your time skulking around in pubs and bars !
    Beer garden?
    "Everybody's got to believe in something. I believe I'll have another beer."
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  7. #47
    In Search of Ebriety Millay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grailhunter View Post
    Impressed you have got sunburnt. Good to know you haven't just spent your time skulking around in pubs and bars !
    Quote Originally Posted by Mobyduck View Post
    Beer garden?
    I resemble those remarks !! I have done the full tourist thing today and will prove it in subsequent posts, which honestly haven't been made up
    I've just joined Alcoholics Anonymous - I still drink, just under a different name.

  8. #48
    In Search of Ebriety Millay's Avatar
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    So, here's the story of Monday, part 1. Had an earlyish breakfast and a proper shave for the first time in three days, these disposable plastic razors have a habit of removing a couple of layers of epidermis. Retrieved my passport from the safe and some odd Euro that I had left over from a previous trip somewhere. Caught the No. 5 bus to the frontier, which is only about 50 meters from the airport buildings. We did have a wait on the approach as a BA plane was just landing so the gates were down. It did give me a chance to get a couple of photos and videos as it was an open top bus (note previous comments about sunburn!!) The bus was incredibly busy and there seems to be people streaming over the border, each way, constantly. It's a fairly informal border if you are walking, with a British flag on one side and a Spanish one on the other.

    Spanish customs involved a rather disinterested woman asking me if I'd bought any cigarettes (maybe she just fancied a smoke). The smuggling of cigarettes from the duty free haven of Gib across the border into Spain is a major concern and provides another reason for the two feuding factions to have a go at each other. Immediately you arrive on the Spanish side you are faced with a vista of tackiness not seen since the Rio handover offering in the Olympic closing ceremony, did you see that? It seemed to comprise of a roadsweeper, a huggy bear style pimp (a la 70's cop show Starsky & Hutch), a guy with lightbulbs attached to his jacket and what looked like gold cybermen. They'll have to do better than that in 2016, perhaps we could lend them Eric Idle who easily outshone the embarrassing Spice Girls.

    Anyway back to La Linea, or La Linea de la Concepcion to give it it's full and rather unworthy name. Cross the main road and you are faced with posters, banners, adverts and lines of shops, bars and restaurants whose sole purpose seems to be to take money from those who have curiously wandered over the border. I didn't spot the Molly Bloom Irish Pub gasman, poor planning on my part, I really should have done some research first. Deciding to decline the kind offer, announced to the crowds via a loud hailer, from a couple of guys selling melons from a transit van, I used some of my loose Euro to buy a beer and gave the rest to someone collecting for the Catholic Mission - or maybe her crackhead boyfriend, I have no idea.

    Decided to get away from the madness and had a walk around the quieter parts of the town and the marina before heading back to Blighty. The queue for the buses back into town was horrendous so I decided to walk which would take me a cross the runway, you should never miss the chance to walk across an airport runway if you get it. Unless anyone knows otherwise I think Gibraltar is the only airport that has a public road running across it. Again we got delayed, this time by an Easyjet flight taking off and then waiting another 15 minutes for a poncy little bi plane thing to arrive. The sight and sound of all the scooters and bikes when the barriers finally went up was something like the start of the Moto GP.

    To be continued .......
    I've just joined Alcoholics Anonymous - I still drink, just under a different name.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Millay View Post

    Unless anyone knows otherwise I think Gibraltar is the only airport that has a public road running across it.
    well not nowadays but when I was a wee boy, Prestwick (Glasgow's and indeed Scotland's International airport) had the road to the seaside running across its runway. Many's the time the family sat in Grandad's Ford Popular waiting for some plane to take off or land before we could get down to Croy Bay..... I'll go and take my medication now, just thought I'd mention it.

    Keep the aspidistra flying, old boy

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  10. #50
    In Search of Ebriety Millay's Avatar
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    Having successfully negotiated the airport runway I follow the hoards into town and head for the Marina to see if there are any dolphin spotting tours going. There are two rival companies running tours, Dolphin Safari which claims to be "the original" and Dolphin Adventure which is a newer boy on the block. But the Dolphin Adventure boat was going out first so I booked on that. I did wonder whether it was a great idea to spend another couple of hours out in the blazing sun after being out all morning but thought I might as well do it as I was there. The safety talk was a bit worrying as we had to remember how to locate, put on and inflate three different types of lifejacket and also lauch the two life rafts. But we'd already set off by then so I just hoped we wouldn't need to.

    Out into the bay we go, with some good views of the Rock, Spain and even Morocco in the distance. There was also some interesting commentary, did you know that dolphins would die if they fell asleep in the water, much like ourselves I suppose. To cope with this they have the ability to turn off half their brain at a time so that one half is asleep and the other is awake, and then they just switch over. Apparently they can fully function in this half asleep state, much like ourselves maybe?, I'll try that one out with the boss at work next time I'm only half awake

    We hadn't seen any dolphins yet but the strategy of following the Dolphin Safari boat, which was already out in the Bay, paid dividends and we found about half a dozen. They weren't particularly active and when the Dolphin Safari boat returned we lost them altogether. Undaunted the crew decided we should head further out where a larger pod had been reported. The plea to "look out for dolphins and let us know if you see any" seemed a strange sort of reversal of roles between supposed experts and excited amatuers. But we did find dolphins and they were larger in numbers and more active than the first lot. A trip worth doing.

    As we get back to the Marina I feel my arms and face burning like the Olympic cauldron so take refuge in, yes you've guessed it, O'Reilly's Irish pub and their fantastic air conditioning. Had a late lunch and grabbed a solitary beer, my ONLY BEER OF THE DAY, I'll have you know. On the way back to the hotel I popped into the Gibraltar Museum for just a quick look around as they were closing within the hour. Interesting place and I may go back again to have a proper look.

    And that was the tale of the day. Not sure what tomorrow will hold but I am certain that it will include a long sleeve shirt and a large hat
    I've just joined Alcoholics Anonymous - I still drink, just under a different name.

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