We had another fine day on the Costa Blanca with glorious sunshine for our visitors. The computers are well and truly a problem and they have had to have technical expertise applied in their direction. We are sorry to have missed you on fabfmspain.com but we hope to be back with you on Wednesday.

As I am writing this blog I am watching Andy Murray who is having a right battle against Wawrinka. This guy looks really good and Murray has played second fiddle so far. I have a horrible feeling this is not going to be Andy’s day but I hope I am wrong. My dilemma is this. Do I stay with Andy on a difficult day at the office or do I have a peep at Coronation St?  I have reached for the controls and I am in the middle of making my decision.This Wawrinka guy is on fire and I cannot see Andy beating him.

Elsewhere, I met an old friend in Alfaz today and did something I don’t do often enough. I chilled out and had a chat and a cup of coffee. I really enjoyed his company and I must do this more often. Let’s get tomorrow’s weather.

Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
31° C | 18° C
31° C | 19° C
32° C | 20° C
32° C | 21° C
33° C | 22° C

It looks like a fantastic week ahead although I have to admit that 32 degrees Celcius is about top whack for for me. Meanwhile, it’s pretty boring watching the trivial chat in the Rover’s and I’ve switched back just as Andy Murray has won the second set. The crowd is going wild and Murray is settling down to the task of beating a really good opponent. This now gives me my dilemma back! You’ve probably guessed what I’m going to do. Incidentally, the roof is on the centre court and it is a really wonderful arena.

Yesterday’s news was about the happenings in Honduras and the television coverage showed how closely the Spanish follow the events of South America. Again, these poor souls who arrive by boat have suffered fatalities. Why don’t the politicians major on why they take these risks?

There is the suggestion that the retirement age in Spain will be raised to the age of 70. Does this mean that I’ve come to live in Spain so I can work longer. Anyway, there’s the talk of more petrol off the coast of Spain. Maybe, this will drag Spain out of recession a little quicker. Murray’s getting his game together. Let’s see today’s Spanish news.

Next we have our Spanish word for the day. I hope you’re still finding them useful. I also like watching the English teaching channel where there’s always something worthy of note. The programme is called Aprende Ingles and is offered throughout the day at various levels. Murray is struggling. This Wawrinka guy is good! I’m missing the second dollop of Corrie…..come to think of it Wawrinka looks like David Platt from Coronation St.


(nah’-dah) (pronoun) – nothing/anything (in negative phrases)

  • Es mejor que nada. – It’s better than nothing.
  • No quiero nada. – I don’t want anything

It’s time to lighten the proceedings….

No matter what this husband did in bed, his wife never achieved an orgasm.  Since by Jewish law a wife is entitled to sexual pleasure, they decide to consult their Rabbi.

The Rabbi listens to their story, strokes his beard, and makes the following suggestion: ‘Hire a strapping young man.  While the two of you are making love, have the young man wave a towel over you.  That will help your wife fantasize and should bring on an orgasm.’

They go home and follow the Rabbi’s advice. They hire a handsome young man and he waves a towel over them as they make love. It does not help and the wife is still unsatisfied. Perplexed, they go back to the Rabbi.

‘Okay,’ he says to the husband, ‘Try it reversed. Have the young man make love to your wife and you wave the towel over them.’

Once again, they follow the Rabbi’s advice. They go home and hire the same strapping young man. The young man gets into bed with the wife and the husband waves the towel. The young man gets to work with great enthusiasm and soon she has an enormous, room-shaking, ear-splitting screaming orgasm.

The husband smiles, looks at the young man and says to him triumphantly,

‘See that, you schmuck?  THAT’S how you wave a towel !’

Andy Murray has just won….FANTASTIC!

Can he do it?

Fabfmspain.com will be off-air for a day or so as we have trouble with our computers. I am reasonable on the technology but I am at my wits end trying to fix this problem. I have the feeling the hot weather gets to the computers every now and again. The last few days have been very hot for both man and computers.

This is the week when a tennis bogey might be laid to rest.It is now referred to as the state of British tennis but we all know this is a farce. Andy Murray is English for the week and Henman Hill is definitely Murray Field. He will do more to cement Anglo-Scottish relations than anyone in history. If Andy Murray wins Wimbledon then I can seriously see him becoming an honorary Womble. He will receive the freedom of Wimbledon Common and receive the title of Uncle Andy Bulgaria. He was awesome in his third round tie against the number 30 seed. He fired at least a dozen aces and his touch was equally soft when it was needed. Come on Andy!

Elsewhere, it was a very close finish in the second Lions test in South Africa. The Springboks left it until the very last minute and the Lions eventually succumbed to a very fine Springbok team. This was despite the odd case of eye gouging!

I’m not jumping on the bandwagon as I usually wait to see a little dust settle before I comment on the passing of great stars. Genius is often a troubled traveller and Michael Jackson certainly was both. His music was in the forefront of the Motown story when five young brothers lit up the world of disco music. I didn’t particularly enjoy their disco years with the Epic label under the name of the Jacksons but, boy did he bounce back to become one of the kings of disco music and his career brought some of the best memories of many of our lives. Thriller was in the vanguard of the Music TV years and it was pure genius in music, choreography and visuals. Even the additional spooky laughter of Vincent Price was pure genius. Subsequently, Michael’s dancing was legendary but it was his appearance that brought most concern. I felt his behaviour followed and mirrored the bizarre facial changes he brought to the news reports on his life.

His was obviously a very troubled life and my personal view is that he craved the love we all need in our lives. My guess is that his personal baggage got in the way of genuine love. My guess is that he was used by many to obtain the good things in life including money. I always felt he had a heavy heart and wanted to get back to the carefree days he seemed to be enjoying as a member of the Jackson Five.That’s all I want to say as it becomes intrusive to go further. I have enough to watch on the TV without adding to it.

Staying with music, it was nice to see Rolf Harris, Tom Jones and Madness complementing the Boss, Bruce Springsteen, and others at Glastonbury. I was also quite surprised to learn about the speakers part of Glastonbury in which the likes of LibDems leader, Nick Clegg, was an invited speaker. It must be reasonably difficult to make a point whilst Status Quo are blasting in the background.

Here’s our Spanish word for today…….

La muerte

(mwer’-teh) (noun) – death; murder, killing

  • Me dio un susto de muerte. – He scared me to death.
  • Morió de muerte natural. – She died a natural death.
  • Odiar a muerte – To loathe someone
  • De mala muerte – Lousy, rotten

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for La muerte.

Here are some headlines you might have missed over the weekend. Please visit the website.



Today was roasting hot and too hot to really enjoy  the sun. I don´t know whether it´s the constant barrage of advice, a little tiredness anyway, or just the sense that sitting in the sun too long will make me feel unwell anyway that makes me prefer to stay indoors. I did like the sun but I don´t yearn to stay in it all day. Let´s check the forecast.

Friday Saturday Sunday Monday
31° C | 21° C
Partly Cloudy
31° C | 21° C
Scattered Clouds
29° C | 18° C
Scattered Clouds
30° C | 21° C
Scattered Clouds
32° C | 20° C
Clear Partly Cloudy Scattered Clouds Scattered Clouds Scattered Clouds

How’s This For Nostalgia?  Do you remember when…….

All the girls had ugly gym slips
It took five minutes for the TV to warm up
Nearly everyone’s Mum was at home when the kids got home from school
Nobody owned a thoroughbred dog
When 3d was a decent allowance
You’d reach into a muddy gutter for a penny
Your Mother wore nylons that came in two pieces
All your male teachers wore ties and female teachers had their hair done every day and wore high heels
You got your windscreen cleaned, oil checked, and petrol served, without asking, all for free, every time. And you didn’t pay for air. And, you got trading stamps to boot
Washing powder had free glasses, dishes or towels hidden inside the box
It was considered a great privilege to be taken out to dinner at a real restaurant with your parents
They threatened to keep children back a year if they failed. . . and they did it!
When a Ford Zephyr was everyone’s dream car… and people went steady
No one ever asked where the car keys were because they were always in the car,
in the ignition, and the doors were never locked
Lying on your back in the grass with your friends and saying things like, ‘That cloud looks like a… ‘
Playing cricket with no adults to help the children with the rules of the game
Bottles came from the corner shop without safety caps and hermetic seals because no one had yet tried to poison a perfect stranger
And with all our progress, don’t you wish, just once, you could slip back in time and savour the slower pace, and share it with the children of today.
When being sent to the head’s study was nothing compared to the fate that awaited the student at home
Basically we were in fear for our lives, but it wasn’t because of drive-by shootings, drugs, gangs, etc. Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat!
But we survived because their love was greater than the threat.
As well as summers filled with bike rides, cricket, Hula Hoops, skate hockey and visits to the pool,
and eating lemonade powder or liquorice sticks.
Didn’t that feel good, just to go back and say, ‘Yes, I remember that’?

And remember that the perfect age is somewhere between old enough to know better and too young to care………..and who can still remember

Mr Pastry, 6.5 Special, The Army Game, Sunday Night at the London Palladium,Emergency Ward 10, the Lone Ranger, Hancock’s Half hour, Trigger and Sgt Bilko

How Many Of These Do You Remember?

Sweet cigarettes, Coca Cola in bottles.
You’re never alone with a Strand.
Coffee shops with Table Side Jukeboxes.
Blackjacks and bubblegums.
Home milk delivery in glass bottles with tinfoil tops.
Newsreels before the film.
Telephone numbers with a word prefix…( Mayfair 3489). Party lines.
Andy Pandy.
Hi-Fi’s & 45 RPM records.
78 RPM records!
Green Shield Stamps.
Adding Machines.

Do You Remember a Time When..

Decisions were made by going ‘eeny-meeny-miney-moe’?
‘Race issue’ meant arguing about who ran the fastest?
Catching tiddlers could happily occupy an entire day?
It wasn’t odd to have two or three ‘Best friends’?
The worst thing you could catch from the opposite sex was ‘chickenpox’?
Having a Weapon in School meant being caught with a catapault?
Saturday morning television wasn’t 30-minute commercials for action figures?
Spinning around, getting dizzy, and falling down was cause for giggles?
The Worst Embarrassment was being picked last for a team?
War was a card game?
Cigarette cards in the spokes transformed any bike into a motorcycle?
Taking drugs meant orange – flavored chewable aspirin?
Water balloons were the ultimate weapon?

If you can remember most or all of these, Then You Have Lived!!!!!!!

Here´s our Spanish word for today……

(toh-carr’) (transitive verb) – to touch, to feel; to play (an instrument); to sound (an alarm)

* ¿Tocas la guitarra? – You play the guitar?
* No toques nada en el museo. – Don’t touch anything in the museum.


* Te toca. – It’s your turn.

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for Tocar.

Fires, violence, drugs and rock ´n´ roll…………….Let´s get the Spanish news for today.

I hope you can join me at midday on Fabfmspain.com


We have had a boiling hot day here on the Costa Blanca. Its name means the white coast and when the sun shines like it has done yesterday we can all see why. This is the Spain loved by the tourists and we look likely to have a hotter than average summer this year. What will today bring?

Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Scattered Clouds
31° C | 22° C
Scattered Clouds
33° C | 21° C
Partly Cloudy
30° C | 19° C
Scattered Clouds
29° C | 17° C
Scattered Clouds
31° C | 18° C
Scattered Clouds Scattered Clouds Partly Cloudy Scattered Clouds Scattered Clouds

The pound has been edging its way to respectability and had been up to 1.18 against the euro. However, it had slipped back to 1.16 yesterday. Today you will be changing at 1 euro 17.

Have you ever wondered why Prince Charles used to hug the trees? I have been conducting a little research as to whether he has been on the right tracks all along. Why do we all need a tree? Here´s a possible answer sent to me recently…..

“I hired a plumber to help me restore an old  farmhouse, and after he had  just finished a rough first day on the job: a flat  tire made him lose an hour  of work, his electric drill quit and  his ancient  one ton truck refused  to start.

While  I drove him home, he sat in stony silence. On  arriving, he invited me  in to meet his family. As we walked toward the  front door, he paused briefly  at a small tree, touching the tips of the  branches with both hands.  When  opening the door he underwent an amazing  transformation.. His face was  wreathed in smiles and he hugged his two small  children and gave his wife  a kiss.  Afterward  he walked me to the car. We passed the tree and  my curiosity  got  the better of me. I asked him about what I had  seen him do earlier.  ‘Oh,  that’s my trouble tree,’ he replied ‘I know I  can’t help having  troubles  on the job, but one thing’s for sure, those  troubles don’t  belong  in the house with my wife and the children.. So  I just hang them  up  on the tree every night when I come home and ask  God to take care of  them.  Then in the morning I pick them up again.’  ‘Funny thing is,’ he smiled,’  when I come out in the morning to pick ’em up,  there aren’t  nearly  as many as I remember hanging up the night  before.’ Life  may not be the party we hoped for, but while we  are here we might  as  well dance. We all need a Tree!”

I was watching the programme about how certain people down on the Costa del Sol are having the threat of having their homes pulled down by bulldozers ruin their lives.Is there no support group that can help them down there? Here on the Costa Blanca we have a good support infrastructure and I´m amazed that there doesn´t  seem to be any one organisation that can help these poor people. Needless to say the producers managed to throw a Benidorm Bar in on the programme to make sure we got a mention!

Whatever you do don´t mention the USA football team if any Spanish fans are about. The ball just wouldn´t go in the net for Spain and the result was a win for the USA 2-0. Also, if any Russian tennis fans are about don´t say you saw Maria Sharopova losing her game. Here´s our Spanish word for today.


(tahl’) (adjective) – such, so, as

  • ¡Nunca dije tal cosa! – I never said such a thing!
  • Se llevó tal disgusto que no vino a mi fiesta. – She was so upset she didn’t come to my party.
  • Con tal de que – As long as

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for Tal.

Whilst Wimbledon is witnessing the advent of the Spanish players even without Rafa Nadal, Rafa, himself, is reported to be affected by the separation of his parents. I think this may well have been the real reason behind his withdrawal from the tournament and it must be a serious blow to him. Meanwhile Jellyfish are trying to spoil the tourists´idea of a safe swim and if this isn´t enough we shall have a very hot summer. Eta terrorists have been apprehended in France and a Briton has had a serious accident in the Canaries. Here´s the link to catch up on all the Spanish news for today.

and there´s more!
visit SpanishVida
Spain’s TV quality suffering
City tycoon accused of £23m tax dodge after deal to buy Richard Branson’s estate

Life´s a Beach!

I´ve just got back from a very relaxing evening spent on a beach chatting with friends and eating snacks. The beach was packed and this was one of then very special evenings of great significance here in Spain. There were fires on the beach and at midnight people took their hand-made boats down to the shoreline where they were set off into the dark with our secret wishes inside. Then it was time for the lads with testosterone to jump over the fires. When we got home it was time to watch the fireworks as all the locals put their own twist on the fiestas.

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”  ~Anne Frank

The weather was nice in the morning yesterday but deteriorated from midday onwards. By the time I had finished my show it was quite dismal. However, it certainly didn´t dampen the spirits of the crowd on the beach. I have to add that it was immensely noticeable that there was no hint of menace on the beach. It was a happy family atmosphere.

Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
31° C | 21° C
Scattered Clouds
33° C | 20° C
Scattered Clouds
31° C | 19° C
30° C | 18° C
Scattered Clouds
30° C | 18° C
Clear Scattered Clouds Scattered Clouds Clear Scattered Clouds

Before we continue I must thank United We Stand for their comments regarding the MPs. I still feel a good answer will be to drop all those already proven to have transgressed onto an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It will be a good punishment that they have much money in the bank and no way to spend it.

Andrew Murray has passed safely through to the second round at Wimbledon. Billie Jean King apparently said, “Pressure is a privilege” and Murray seems to be able handle the pressure. Can he win the title? Elsewhere, the British lions werelooking to recover their momentum after the test defeat. They failed to defeat the emerging Springboks who managed to make a last gasp draw.

It was interesting to watch the Times Spelling Bee on the television and the youngsters who won the title were a very special group of young lads. They seemed very articulate during their television interview and were pleased to tell the world about their prize. They were going to edit The Young Times! Their teachers told us they are a very self-motivated group of lads and it seems that good spelling is alive and well. There is a school of thought which proposes that spelling dusn’t matter any more. Persunallee, I downt beeleeve thys two bea troo. Paw speling maykes itt farr mor dificlte two unndastnd!

Here´s our Spanish word for today.

(ten-derr’) (transitive verb) – to lay out, to hang out, to stretch out, to spread; to hold out

* Tengo que tender la ropa. – I have to hang the laundry on the line.
* Le tendí la mano. – I held my hand out to him.

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for Tender.

The Starfish
By: Author Unknown

An old man awoke just before sunrise, as he often did, to walk by the ocean’s edge and greet the new day. As he moved through the morning dawn, he focused on a faint, far away motion.   He saw a youth, bending and reaching and flailing arms, dancing on the beach, no doubt in celebration of the perfect day soon to begin. As the old man approached, he realized that the youth was not dancing to the bay, but rather bending to sift through the debris left by the night’s tide, stopping now and then to pick up starfish,
and then standing up to heave it back into the sea.  He asked the youth the purpose of the effort. “The tide
has washed the starfish onto the beach, and they cannot return to the sea by themselves,” the youth replied. “When the sun rises, they will die unless I throw them back into the sea.”

The old man surveyed the vast expanse of beach that stretched in both directions beyond eyesight.  Starfish littered the shore in numbers beyond calculation. The hopelessness of the youth’s plan became clear, and the old man said, “But young man, don’t you realize that there are more starfish on this beach than you could ever save before the sun is up? You cannot possibly expect to make a difference!”

The youth paused briefly to consider the old man’s words. He then bent down, picked up another starfish, and threw it as far as possible into the sea. Turning to the old man, he said, “I made a difference to that one!”

Mark has sent us the following from Spanish Vida

Osito Gominola – Full Spanish Version

From www.gummibar.net – Full length spanish version of I Am A Gummy Bear (The Gummy Bear Song) – Osito Gominola. Visit Gummibär online at www.funnygummy.com

The news has all the depressing elements you’d expect with fires, fighters and football.Let´s get today´s Spanish News

Butter Up Buttercup!

With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts. – Eleanor Roosevelt, 1884-1962, American Humanitarian and Former First Lady of the United States

It was a funny old day yesterday and we were given a forecast of beautiful weather. The fact of the matter was that it rained all day long. Let´s see what is forecast for today.

Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
30° C | 17° C
31° C | 19° C
Scattered Clouds
33° C | 20° C
32° C | 20° C
30° C | 17° C

Let´s hope we get what is forecast today. The weather certainly seemed to depress a few people yesterday and it was a day of almost non-stop bad luck!

I love butter but I had been given the impression that it was not the best of foods to be eating. As a consequence I have been eating margarine thinking I was doing the right thing. That was… until today. The following has been sent to me and I now am going to do a bit of research and possibly eat butter once again. Here was the information I was given………….

Margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who had put all the money into the research wanted a payback so they put their heads together to figure out what to
do with this product to get their money back. It was a white substance with no food appeal so they added the yellow colouring and sold it to people to use in place of butter. How do you like it? They have come
out with some clever new flavourings.

DO YOU KNOW.. the difference between margarine and butter?

Both have the same amount of calories.

Butter is slightly higher in saturated fats at 8 grams compared to 5 grams.

Eating margarine can increase heart disease in women by 53% over eating the same amount of butter, according to a recent Harvard Me dical Study.

Eating butter increases the absorption of many other nutrients in other foods.

Butter has many nutritional benefits where margarine has a few only because they are added!

Butter tastes much better than margarine and it can enhance the flavours of other foods.

Butter has been around for centuries where margarine has been around for less than 100 years.

And now, for Margarine..

Very high in trans fatty acids..

Triple risk of coronary heart disease.
Increases total cholesterol and LDL (this is the bad cholesterol) and lowers HDL cholesterol, (the good cholesterol)

Increases the risk of cancers up to five fold.

Lowers quality of breast milk.

Decreases immune response.

Decreases insulin response.

And here’s the most disturbing fact…. HERE IS THE PART THAT IS VERY INTERESTING!

Margarine is but ONE MOLECULE away from being PLASTIC..This fact alone was enough to have me avoiding margarine for life and anything else that is hydrogenated (this means hydrogen is added, changing the molecular structure of the substance).

You can try this yourself:

Purchase a tub of margarine and leave it in your garage or shaded area. Within a couple of days you will note a couple of things:

* no flies, not even those pesky fruit flies will go near it (that should tell you something)

* it does not rot or smell differently because it has no nutritional value; nothing will grow on it. Even those teeny weeny microorganisms will not a find a home to grow. Why? Because it is nearly plastic.
Would you melt your Tupperware and spread that on your toast?

El miedo

(myeh’-doh) (noun) – fear

  • ¿Te da miedo salir de noche? – You’re scared to go out at night?
  • Temblado de miedo. – She was trembling with fear.
  • Tengo miedo por ti. – I’m worried about you.
  • Hace un frío de miedo. – It is terribly cold.

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for El miedo.

There´s been all kinds of everything happening in Spain. You can read about bare faced smuggling in the Costa Del Sol, gangs smuggling posh cars, children having a problem on the way home from school and Spain´s under 21s failing to get to the semi-finals. Let´s look at the Spanish news for today.

Here is a sample of the news that Mark sent me from his website yesterday…..


200 Euro fine for sounding horn. Another for playing music.

Posted: 21 Jun 2009 02:04 PM PDT

A man has been punished by the City of Valencia with a fine of 200 euro for using musical equipment and disturbing his neighbours, which was considered an offence under the municipal protection…

Spain, France and Portugal uneasy over any EU banana deal

Posted: 21 Jun 2009 12:50 PM PDT

Three European banana producers — France,Spain and Portugal — said Friday they would not accept any EU-negotiatedagreement that threatened their production. France produces bananas in its…

Spain to consider tax change for 2010

Posted: 21 Jun 2009 09:47 AM PDT

Spain will decide whether to hike income tax for high earners and reduce tax breaks in 2010 after the summer, Economy Minister Elena Salgado said in an interview on Sunday. ‘In September we…

Thousands protest in Spain against ETA after Basque murder

Posted: 21 Jun 2009 06:13 AM PDT

Thousands of people in the spanish city of Bilbao demonstrated against the Basque separatist organization ETA on Saturday, one day after the murder of a policeman in the region. Under banners reading…

Baron Cohen appears as bull in Spain

Posted: 21 Jun 2009 04:37 AM PDT

Actor Sacha Baron Cohen’s latest movie character, an Austrian fashionista called Bruno, drew gasps and some cheers as he appeared dressed as a bull in front of Spain’s main bullring…

Most endangered feline brought back from the brink

Posted: 21 Jun 2009 04:32 AM PDT

Road signs throughout the vast Donana National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in southwestern Spain, warn drivers to watch out for lynxes. But actually there is little chance of spotting a member…

RFID Tracks Mussel Beds in Spain

Posted: 21 Jun 2009 04:28 AM PDT

A family-owned mussel business in Galicia, Spain, has teamed with researchers at the University of Vigo to test RFID for tracking mussel cultivation. The mussel company, Concepción Suárez Fernández,…

Ladies First!

The weekend has been as hectic as ever albeit with a change in the weather. We have had rain on both days. I even jumped into the pool and had a swim when it was raining on Sunday. On Saturday we had our Intercambio and it is always a great pleasure to chat with my Spanish friends and others who wish to improve their English or Spanish.In fact, I have definitely learnt more about South America via my friends from Ecuador and Colombia from our Saturdays.Let´s get the weather forecast.

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
28° C | 17° C
30° C | 17° C
31° C | 19° C
Chance of Rain
33° C | 20° C
31° C | 21° C

This is weird.We have rain as I am writing this blog at 8.30 am and it is looking rather ominous. My guess is we will have more rain today.Wimbledon has its roof prepared and Britain expects every Andy Murray to do his duty. You will have noticed the rivalry between England and Scotland will have dissipated for the duration of Wimbledon. He is a Scot and honorary Englishman for the fortnight! Henman Hill officially becomes Murray field!

Ladies are now officially brighter than men. Nancy Dickman is the 2009 Mastermind. She has managed to have a baby and look after her new child whilst preparing for the competition. I wonder if she is aware the pound is changing at 1 euro 18 today?

If the gentlemen couldn’t win Mastermind at least they’d know how to get a cork out of a bottle if it were stuck inside! If you have ever had a cork stuck inside a bottle then fear not…help is at hand. I have yet to try this myself. In fact I doubt if I will try it! Let’s review some of the weekend’s sport.

I thought the South Africans would win in the Rugby Union and although the Lions brought the score to a respectability I suspect it was only as a result of the Springbok substitutions. I am even going out on a limb to predict the Springboks will win the second test. If we wanted success then we must thank the English ladies cricket team. They were brilliant and won their 20/20 World Championship. They will earn a fraction of the money  earned by their overpaid and overrated male counterparts. I wonder whether they will get the tour of London on an open top bus. They certainly deserve it.

I wonder what is happening with Formula 1. Is money again at the root of all evil? Is it really about who can spend the most on the cars?  If the money is to be capped then surely we will find the best brains in the car manufacturing and a chance of finding the true best of the bunch of F1 drivers?  Surely Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton haven’t really declined in their driving skills to their current finishing positions?  However, it is nice to see a few different faces winning the Grand Prix and the days of Schumaker in his one car races would seem to be at an end. I can honestly say I have taken more interest this year and it was nice to see Stirling Moss on the box. You might care to listen to his interview with me on my website. As it was Silverstone Stirling was featured quite a lot over the weekend. It’s lovely to see how the box really works. We were able to enjoy Sir Stirling on Mr and Mrs on the Saturday and Stirling was with Andrew Marr on the Sunday. When will we see him again?

Actually, Stirling proved to be quite an eccentric and his house is full of gadgetry. He also has a rather weird sense of humour as you might hear on my podcast. You must remember the silly question What flies out of a cupboard at tremendous speed?  Yes. Stirling moth!

The following ended up in my mailbox.

Here’s an unsettling new report that puts a dark twist on the phrase “chip off the old block.” A review published in the British medical journal The Lancet says that kids whose fathers suffer from depression, post-traumatic stress, or addiction to drugs or alcohol are at a greater risk to develop mental health issues themselves.

Of course, this seems like an amazingly logical — even obvious — conclusion. But believe it or not, the effect of a father’s mental state is far less studied than the impact of the mother’s mental health.

While the study makes sense, I do believe that it drew some particularly broad conclusions. For example, it theorized that a dad’s “mental health issues” automatically go hand-in-hand with other problems that can impact children, such as an inability to support the family financially. There was even the suggestion that these dads cannot give the necessary emotional support to their children. Sometimes true, to be sure… but not the sort of thing that can be quantified by research.

Frustratingly, the researchers also concluded that they “don’t have the evidence to be completely sure that things will be better for their children if the men get treatment.” So… if the men are cured of their depression, they won’t be any better fathers? It seems to contradict the so-called findings of this weak study.

William Campbell Douglass II, M.D.

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Let´s get our Spanish word for today.


(ter-mee-narr’) (intransitive verb) – to finish, to complete; to end, to stop, to terminate; to split up

  • Termina esa sopa antes de comer el postre. – Finish up that soup before eating dessert.
  • Esto va a terminar mal. – This is going to turn out badly.
  • ¡Hemos terminado! – It is over between us!

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for Terminar.

The grapes are being harvested in the province of Aliocnate and the harvest should yield a bumper crop. This is despite the fact that there are lots of rabbits about. Fernando Alonso is still upbeat despite finishing 14th at Silverstone and two doormen were shot at a disco in Alicante.

Here´s the link for today´s news in Spain.  Our other main site for the news SpanishVida doesn´t update til later in the day. Here´s a little light-heartedness to, hopefully, give you a smile.

At 85 years of age, Martin married Rose, a lovely 25 year old ironing lady from the Philipines.

    Since her new husband is so old, Rose decides that after their wedding she and Martin should have separate bedrooms, because she is concerned that her new but aged husband may overexert himself if they spend the entire night together.
    After the wedding festivities Rose prepares herself for bed and the expected knock’ on the door. Sure enough the knock comes, the door opens and there is Martin , her 85 year old groom, ready for action. They unite as one. All goes well, Martin takes leave of his bride, and she prepares to go to sleep.
    After a few minutes, Rose hears another knock on her bedroom door, and it’s Martin , Again he is ready for more ‘action’. Somewhat surprised, Rose consents for more coupling. When the newly weds are done, Martin kisses his bride, bids her a fond good night and leaves.

    She is set to go to sleep again, but, aha you guessed it – Martin Is back again, rapping on the door, and is as fresh as a 25-year-old, ready for more ‘action’. And, once more they enjoy each other. But as Martin gets set to leave again, his young bride says to him, ‘I Am thoroughly impressed that at your age you can perform so well and so often. I have been with guys less than a third of your age who were only good once. You are truly a great lover, Martin.’

    Martin , somewhat embarrassed, turns to Rose and says: ‘You mean I was here already?’

    The moral of the story: Don’t be afraid of getting old, Alzheimer’s has its advantages.

United We Stand!

I was taken to task because I suggested that Man Utd. always get a nice easy game at the start of the new season. To put the record straight I will give you the correction. “Last season Man. Utd.’s first game of the season was against Newcastle United:Hardly “new boys”. For the record the result was one all!” Newcastle went on to prove themselves one of the weakest teams in the Premiership, in fact they went through the trapdoor and will need to buck their ideas up to get out of the championship. I suppose I can claim that I was not far from the truth with my original statement! Incidentally, I received a lovely e-mail from my old mate, Nipper Newnes, who reminded me of a great goal I scored for Higher Bebington. It might sound a bit big-headed but it was a spectacular overhead effort and Nipper had remembered this goal when seeing Rooney´s effort for England. Now that did make me feel good. If only I had Rooney´s money to go with it!

The weather was nice today and the pound was changing at 1.17 against the euro. Let´s see what lies ahead.

Friday Saturday Sunday Monday
Scattered Clouds
29° C | 18° C
33° C | 19° C
Chance of Rain
28° C | 17° C
Chance of Rain
28° C | 16° C
29° C | 17° C

That looks rather nice although we´ll need to keep an eye on the brollies for Sunday. Now, I´m writing this blog ahead of one of my favourite programmes on TV. I love Question Time and I will be interested to see what will be asked regarding the MPs expenses. I see, like everyone else, that there is now a list on the Internet for all to see. However, parts of each statement are blacked out for ….security?

From the BBC website…..

It is a year since the Commons was ordered to publish all details – including second homes addresses – by the High Court under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, after a long battle.

The fact that addresses are not included means it is impossible to see if an MP “flipped” their second homes designation and claimed for several different properties – a key part of the Telegraph’s revelations.

The MPs are very well paid before all the fiddling starts. Here is the basic package. MPs are paid an annual salary of £63,291 and receive allowances for the costs of running an office, having homes both near Westminster and in their constituency, and travelling between both. According to the last figures to be published, in October 2007, the average claimed by each MP was £135,600 a year. They also have a generous final salary pension scheme. All this comes as the basis to a comprehensive package of further expenses.

There is no limit on the amount of travel expenses MPs can claim – but it is subject to certain rules. They can claim business class air fares and first class rail travel for Parliamentary business within the UK. They can also claim up to three visits a year to European institutions, as well as up to 30 single journeys a year for spouses or children.

MPs can also claim for staff travel – up to 24 single journeys a year between Westminster and their constituency. Overall MPs claimed £4.5m in travel expenses in 2006/7.

Drivers can claim 40p a mile for the first 10,000 miles then 25p a mile. Cyclists get 20p a mile while motorcyclists can claim 24p a mile. These rates can be claimed for journeys between Westminster, their constituency and their main home.

So, how do the Spanish MPs fare when it comes to pay? From various websites I found the following facts. Spanish MPs receive a basic salary of €3,126 a month. On top of this, MPs from within Madrid get €870 a month in expenses, while MPs with a constituency out of the capital get €1,823 a month in expenses. MPs also receive a food allowance when travelling – €150 a day for international trips and €120 a day for domestic travel. Does this indicate the British MPs are already far wealthier than their Spanish counterparts?

Elsewher, basic salary for members of the French National Assembly is €7,009 per month pre-tax. They have to pay income tax on that as well as make contributions to social security. Members are allowed to hold other local elective offices such as mayor, and they can receive an extra €2,722 a month for that. They can also hold other remunerated posts that are not included in the parliamentary pay limits.

They may claim expenses of up to €5,837 per month for transport, rent for second homes in Paris, entertainment, clothing and incidentals. There are benefits in kind including free first-class travel on the national rail network SNCF, 40 free return flights per year between Paris and their constituencies and six free return flights per year on itineraries of their choice within mainland France.

The National Assembly can lend them money to buy or rent accommodation or office space either in Paris or in their constituency. The French National Assembly website says the average loan granted to MPs is €76,225 over 10 years at an interest rate of 2%. Not bad if you can get it!

Here´s our Spanish word for today.


(yeh-narr’) (transitive
) – to fill, to pack, to stuff; to cover; to fulfill, to

  • Llenó el jardín con rosas. – She filled the
    garden with roses.
  • Mis hijos me llenan de orgullo. – My
    children fill me with pride.

For more information and examples,
visit the SpanishDict.com entry for Llenar.

Today´s stories include the wishes of the Bishops in the Catholic Church in the abortion debate, fires connected to domestic violence and a tractor protest in Galicia…here´s the Spanish news for today.

Bullfight protesters go undie-cover

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 04:58 PM PDT
About 30 animal rights activists dressed only in their underwear have protested bullfighting in front of a bull sculpture across from the Eiffel Tower. Supporters of the People for the Ethical…

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Earthquake – Granada

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 04:23 PM PDT
Summary: Magnitude ML 2.6 Region SPAIN Date time 2009-06-18 at 14:41:04.3 UTC Location 37.09 N ; 3.61 W Depth 5 km Distances 9 km S Granada (pop 238,248 ; local time 16:41…

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Spain’s green light for pay-DTT

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 03:20 PM PDT
Against all odds Spain’s Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Commerce has given its green light to a pay-TV system on the nation’s digital terrestrial TV scheme. Spain is proposing a law…

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UPDATE 1-Mapfre says may miss 2009 Spain sales forecasts | Industries | Financial Services & Real Estate | Reuters

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 07:31 AM PDT
spanish insurance company Mapfre (MAP.MC) may miss its domestic sales forecasts for 2009, the chairman Jose Manuel Martinez said on Thursday. “It’s possible that sales in Spain will be…

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Spanish police issue warning leaflet to tourists

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 05:59 AM PDT
Tourists arriving in Spain are to be offered information leaflets issued by the police, warning of potential risks of crime whilst their vigilance may not be as strict as it ought to be. When renting…

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Government to regulate shark fishing

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 05:42 AM PDT
The General Secretariat of the Mar del Ministerio de Medio Ambiente, y Medio Rural y Marino held a meeting yesterday with the fishing industry and ONG to discuss and analyze the proposal for a…

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Young male stabbed on Gran Canaria

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 05:28 AM PDT
A male of 26 years of age died on Wednesday afternoon after being stabbed in a street by another man, in Vecindario, Gran Canaria, according to sources at the 112 control centre. The victim died…

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Congress approves new traffic laws

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 04:56 AM PDT
All parliamentary groups, except the PP who abstained, approved in the House of Congress the reforms of the penal procedure of the traffic law, which is mainly to reduce the time from which a driver…

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Telefonica Espana Selects HN System Solution from Hughes Europe

Posted: 18 Jun 2009 04:31 AM PDT
Telefonica Espana has selected a HN System solution from Hughes Europe, the European operating entity of Hughes Network Systems, to deliver satellite-based VoIP Voice over IP rural telecommunications…

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Finally, here´s an alternative point of view.Before you give up everything just because “everyone” says it’s healthy… Find out why vegetarians actually die younger, why there is no benefit to drinking gallons of water, why you should keep your cholesterol level above 200, and many more myth-busting facts that will lead you on the road to real health.Stop depriving yourself and find out how you can enjoy the food you love while improving your health at the same time!


Hope you can join me on Fabfm at midday.

School Meals

We had another great day here on the Costa Blanca and everyone is now getting used to this hot weather. Is it going to last?  I will get the weather in a few minutes but be warned I think there is a little rain due today. But it is not going to last!

Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
29° C | 16° C
Chance of Rain
30° C | 18° C
31° C | 20° C
27° C | 15° C
27° C | 15° C
Clear Chance of Rain

20% chance of precipitation
Clear Clear Clear

I am contrasting this forecast with the days on end in Cornwall with the prevailing westerlies blowing me up the drive of Duchy College. I used to be drenched by the time I got to the refectory. It might sound posh but it was only a small basic room with some very nice food on offer.

I remember going into the room one day and was about to join the queue when I noticed one of our Downs Syndrome students going blue in the face and gasping for air. I don´t know why but instinct told me to get behind him and perform the Heimlich Manoevre. I squeezed with all my might and a whole boiled potato shot out of his mouth. I don´t know who was more surprised me or the student. I also cannot remember what happened to the potato. Was it ever eaten? One of life´s great unsolved mysteries.

On my show yesterday I was reading more about the sleazy incumbents of the Westminster Parliament. They have really great prices in a number of restaurants throughout the building. They can also smoke whereas ´tis they who make the laws for everyone else not to smoke. Again the example is being set!

The comments being written on the website where very revealing. One irate mother pointed out that she has to spend 1.85 per day for her childrens´ school meals. Another squaddie revealed that the allowance for the troops to have a meal were not anywhere near as generous. Another writer pointed out that not only are they well paid, they have the right to claim back the cost of these subsidised meals. There was even one comment which was not far off calling form the people to rise up against the tyranny of the MPs. God knows how the voting will go in the next General Election. We have also woken up to the news that a Treasury minister has resigned after having made a ‘mistake’. Her mistake is the equivalent to most people’s life savings. This was no mistake. She knew what she was doing and she has been caught with her hand in the till.

Manchester United have done it again. I seem to remember they get the new boys in the first game of the new season virtually every year. They welcome Birmingham City in the first game of the season. Blackburn host Man City and Chelsea take on Hull. Liverpool are away to Tottenham and it might be a good place to right the wrongs of last season for RAFA. Do you remember the Harry Redknapp factor last year?

Here are stories you might have missed yesterday. Please click on the links for access to the full stories

Posted: 16 Jun 2009 08:40 AM PDT

Carrefour has asked its workers to postpone their summer holidays until October and November, in order to meet the needs of their stores during the summer months, without having to resort to hiring…

Posted: 16 Jun 2009 01:31 PM PDT

Spains private and regional TV channels are worrying because of the possible negative consequences forced upon them by the switching off of analogue TV, and subsequent future sharing of the broadcast…
65 Arrests for domestic violence in two weeksPosted: 16 Jun 2009 07:37 AM PDT
The Guardia Civil have been arrested 63 men and 2 women in the Alicante province, for crimes of domestic violence, in the first half of June. According to the Guardia Civil, the offences occurred in…

Posted: 16 Jun 2009 05:04 AM PDT

A package tour launched this week hopes to capitalise on the growing trend by offering lesbians a gay marriage and fertility deal on the spanish costas. Rainbow Travel, a travel agency aimed at gays…

More than 150 thousand pets were lost or abandoned in 2008

Posted: 16 Jun 2009 08:07 AM PDT

An annual report by the Fundación Affinity, released today, shows that the abandonment of pets is still at an unnacceptable high in Spain. In 2008, local councils and animal welfare associations…

Spain took a battering on British TV last night. Traditionally, the programmes have been looking for people who have come here to make a new life. Last night’s programmes concentrated on those living the nightmare. The film-makers had managed to find a number of people who have had a really bad experience and have found life in Spain a hell on earth. One Irishman was even trying his best to maintain his property despite sewage running outside his front door. I sincerely hope he finds an answer to his dreadful situation. In the meantime, here´s our word for the day.

La suerte

(swer’-teh) (noun) – luck, chance, fate, destiny; sort, type

  • Por suerte no estaba sola. – Luckily she wasn’t alone.
  • ¡Qué suerte que tengo la extra llave! – How lucky that I have the extra key.
  • Tentar a la suerte – To try one’s luck
  • Dejar a uno a su suerte – To abandon somebody

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for La suerte.

In the news today there is a fine for a dog owner who did not collect the pooch’s offering to the world, there’s a bar where you can go to be insulted and it’s unlikely that David Villa will be going to Real Madrid. Let´s get today´s Spanish News.

Let´s lighten the load….

John was a salesman’s delight when it came to any kind of unusual gimmicks. His wife Marsha had long ago given up trying to get him to change. One day John came home with another one of his unusual purchases. It was a robot that John claimed was actually a lie detector.

It was about 5:30 that afternoon when Tommy, their 11 year old son, returned home from school. Tommy was over 2 hours late.”Where have you been? Why are you over 2 hours late getting home?” asked John. “Several of us went to the library to work on an extra credit project,” said Tommy.
The robot walked around the table and slapped Tommy, knocking him completely out of his chair. “Son,” said John, “this robot is a lie detector, now tell us where you really were after school.””We went to Bobby’s house and watched a movie.” said Tommy. “What did you watch?” asked Marsha.”The Ten Commandments”  answered Tommy. The robot went around to Tommy and once again slapped him, knocking him off his chair. With his lip quivering, Tommy got up, sat down and said, “I am sorry I lied. We really watched a tape called Sex Queen.”

“I am ashamed of you son,” said John. “When I was your age, I never lied to my parents.”  The robot walked around to John and delivered a whack that nearly knocked him out of his chair. Marsha doubled over in laughter, almost in tears and said, “Boy, did you ever ask for that one! You can’t be too mad with Tommy. After all, he is your son!”
The robot walked around to Marsha and knocked her out of her chair.

Hope you can join me at midday on Fabfm

Green Shoots

This hot weather does drain you. I am drinking gallons of water and I haven´t even time to enjoy the taste of the water. This could be a long summer! However, I´m glad to see the green shoots of economic

recovery are beginning to appear in a few economic reports. I have even seen it written that Gordon Brown´s plans for worldwide recovery are showing signs of bearing fruit. Now wouldn´t that be ironical if everyone else can see the right signs apart from the British.Here´s the weather.

Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
29° C | 16° C
Scattered Clouds
30° C | 17° C
Chance of Rain
30° C | 18° C
Chance of Rain
27° C | 14° C
Chance of Rain
27° C | 14° C

The next paragraph has been sent to me.

Spanish language day – 20th June

Posted: 15 Jun 2009 04:45 PM PDT

Saturday 20th June marks the first official day of celebration of the spanish language. All 73 centres of the Instituto Cervantes around the globe will celebrate the language spoken by 450 million people world wide, through a variety of activities.

The events begin at 11:00 (local time in each country) with a “shower of words” shot from a compressed air canon, with words like “abrazo” (hug), “amor” (love), “añoranza” (longing), “bailar” (dance), “beso” (kiss), “chévere” (cool), “fiesta” (party), “chocolate” (erm chocolate), “hola” (hello) and “sonrisa” (smile). These ten words also decorate the facades of the Instituto Cervantes.

In Madrid, the director of the Instituto Cervantes, Carmen Caffarel inaugurate a giant poetry wall, 150 meters in length, that volunteers can write improvised poems.

There have also been internet campaigns to find the favourite spanish word from all spanish speaking people, as well as suggesting new words to incorporate into the language. More than 50.000 Internet users from 110 countries have participated in this initiative and 2.623 words have been proposed.

Share this story: Digg del.icio.us Facebook Google Bookmarks E-mail this story to a friend! LinkedIn Live Ping.fm TwitThis MySpace NewsVine Print this article! Reddit Spurl StumbleUpon FriendFeed MSN Reporter Turn this article into a PDF! RSS Technorati


(deh-see-deer’) (transitive verb) – to decide, to make up one’s mind, to settle

  • Decidió comprar un coche nuevo. – He decided to buy a new car.
  • ¿Puedes ayudarme decidir cual color es mejor? – Can you help me decide which color is better?

For more information and examples, visit the SpanishDict.com entry for Decidir.

Sadly, the police have scaled down the search for the British hiker Michael Egglestone. Let´s catch up on today´s news in Spain.

I get tons of stuff coming through then post and every now and then I think maybe a certain article might be of benefit to readers of my blog. I might be kidding myself but this might be useful!

*** Article: How to Recover from a Bad Day – By Melissa McCreery, PhD, ACC ***

Bad days are a part of life. We all have them. No matter how many yoga classes you attend or how smoothly your life runs, you’ll run up against one sooner or later. The secret to thriving is learning how to move forward in spite of bad days, not aiming to never have one (although minimizing their frequency is a good thing).

Here are some tips for dusting yourself off and getting back on track after a bad day happens:

Do you have permission to have a bad day? Make sure that your inner-perfectionist (the one who requires all-or-nothing success) isn’t running your show. Are you knee-deep in self-blame or guilt for things that may have contributed to your bad day (or for the way you reacted to it)? As long as you are busy beating yourself up, you won’t be able to move on. Why not try on the idea that an occasional bad day is simply to be expected? It doesn’t mean you failed; it means it’s time to implement the “bad day plan.”

Are you ready to move on, and what will you need to let go of to do so? This is an important question. Are you ready to move on from your bad day, or do you need it to continue for a little while longer? If you are busy beating yourself up, or feeling miserable, or drowning your sorrows, or feeling indignant and victimized, you’re not ready to stop having a bad day yet. What do you need to let go of in order to start to shift into a different space? Anger, hurt, frustration, and negativity are all common answers.

What do you want to move on TO? How do you want things to be? How do you want to feel? What do you want your mindset or mental attitude to be? Your posture? Your facial expressions? Take a look in the mirror and make sure you aren’t still carrying your bad day with you — it’s amazing how often we do this.

What helps you feel grounded? An important step in moving on from a bad day is connecting with the present and letting go of the past. What helps you to be really present in THIS moment — completely here and alive? For some people, deep breathing or physical activity helps. Some people like to journal or spend quiet time alone. Take some time to get centered and to set your intention for how you want to BE in the present moment and into the future.

What kind thing can you do for yourself? This is what we do for others who are having a bad day. What can you do for yourself? (And no, a pint of ice cream doesn’t count.) Can you call a friend or rent a movie? Pick a flower from your yard? Schedule a massage or a long bath or buy some new nail polish? Bad day recovery days are prime times for self-care.

What’s one thing you can commit to that is a positive action? It doesn’t need to be big. Pick one small step or action that signifies that you are moving in a positive direction. Do a good deed or a short workout or clean out one drawer. You’ll know the action that fits. Your goal is to take the first step toward getting on a more positive track, and when that’s done, take the next one.

About the Author:
Melissa McCreery, PhD, ACC is a Psychologist and Life and Wellness Coach who helps busy women who are struggling with weight, stress, and emotional eating. She is the creator of the Emotional Eating Toolbox™. Sign up for a free 5-part Self-Care Package Audio E-course to increase your life balance, and learn more about her programs and resources at http://newsletters.selfgrowth.com/t/5850161/19439589/1409/0/

and a little something to lighten the load……..

One evening a husband, thinking he was being funny, said to his wife, ‘Perhaps we should start washing your clothes in ‘Slim Fast’. Maybe it would take a few inches off of your butt!’

His wife was not amused, and decided that she simply couldn’t let such a comment go unrewarded.
The next morning the husband took a pair of underwear out of his drawer. ‘What the heck is this?’ he said to himself as a little ‘dust’ cloud appeared when he shook them out.

‘Cathy’, he hollered into the bathroom, ‘Why did you put talcum powder in my underwear?’

She replied with a snicker. ‘It’s not talcum powder; it’s ‘Miracle Grow’!!!!! !