Diamond Jubilee Sunday in Gibraltar

‘Go forth and enjoy.’ Or words to that effect.

The Ministry of Culture in conjunction with the Diamond Jubilee Committee are calling on the general public to support all the events that mark the 60th Anniversary of Her Majesty’s accession to the throne.

Well, there wasn’t much chance of us supporting anything at night-time on Friday and Saturday, but lunchtime is right up our street. Or right down Main Street in this case. So being right-on citizens off, we went for a looky.

Billed as The Big Lunch Street Party, yesterday was fancy dress for children, some performances, and a musical extravaganza for adults.

I’m not sure where the big lunch came into it. There were certainly no free lunches which was something of a shame, as I suddenly realised over the long weekend that I had turned into Mother Hubbard and had an exceedingly bare fridge.

Gibraltar is renowned for celebrating National Day (in September) in style, when it is de rigeur to wear our national colours of red and white.

That makes life pretty easy to celebrate being British this weekend, everyone has red and white clothes, so all we have to do is add a touch of blue. Trouble is, after 14 years of wearing a navy blue school uniform, it is the one colour I don’t possess. Red and white would have to suffice.

Walking out of our front door, the first thing we saw were union flags. On the house at the bottom of the street, and on someone’s T-shirt.

Red, white and blue bunting runs the length of Main Street, and shops not only hung flags (lots of them!), window displays were given the treatment too.

Some people had really made an effort with their outfits.

And get this red white and blue dog. Very chic.

When we arrived at The Piazza (John Mackintosh Square), it was speech time. Solomon Levy, former Mayor of Gibraltar (and our freeholder, although that wasn’t why he was on stage) was blessing the Queen, Gibraltar, the UK, and everything except Spain. Hip Hip – HURRAY! we shouted enthusiastically. OK, I didn’t but Partner did. And we clapped.

Then the current Mayor of Gib, Julio Alcantra gave out prizes to the children who had entered the fancy dress comp. The theme was Africa.

This, explains the mystery of Rhona the Rhino. She’s basically a plastic piggy bank and any donations go to buy barrels of water for Africa at £30 a throw. Well, that’s a relief that we didn’t have a real live rhino charging up and down Main Street. I could argue about the cost of an air flight to collect dear Rhona, and Rhona’s air passage and speculate as to how many barrels of water that might buy, but I won’t cast a £30 damper on the fun.

Sending water barrels to Africa though? It’s a bit like giving people fish instead of teaching them to fish isn’t it? Why not look at better use of the environment? Ooops, I wasn’t going to say anything. Back to the party and no free lunch.

We wandered back up Cannon Lane carefully avoiding the hog roast, (wonder if that was free?) and up to Governor’s Parade where there was a pretty decent band playing.

Given the Mother Hubbard status of my fridge we visited the local Moroccan veg shop. His shop was half empty. Nothing until Wednesday, he said. Oh dear.

We got home and I decided to go for the essentials in life, olives, tomato and cucumber. Back I went to the Roccy shop. The band was still playing, people were still chilling in the sun. It was all very relaxed. Lunch was sandwiches, chips, olives, tomato and cucumber.

In the evening, starving Partner insisted on going out for a pizza. The ‘phone rang. I ignored it. Couldn’t think of anyone who would ring me on a Sunday. He turned up five minutes later. He’d forgotten his glasses and couldn’t read the menu. He’d tried to ring so I could look up the menu on the internet. Why didn’t he just ask for what he wanted at the pizza place?

En route he met our freeholder and they shook hands. He might be in his late 70s but he doesn’t miss a thing. We’d both noticed him looking our way and spotting us at the speechifying. ‘Very patriotic of you,’ he said.

Anyway, the pizza. It was from Mamma Mia, at Red Sands, and seemed expensive to me (most things seem expensive to me), at £12.50 although that did include a Peroni (cheers Vicky!!) while waiting.

Olives, (yes, we do live on olives), chillies, and capers, with minimal cheese at my insistence. It was good though. There was none left for breakfast.

I wonder if we can find a free lunch today? We’re off to see the flotilla which departs from Ocean Village at noon.

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30 comments on “Diamond Jubilee Sunday in Gibraltar

    • Even moreso when the flotilla sets off today tooting and parping and hooting and ringing bells as they go round the Rock. And as it’s not an island I guess they will have to turn round and do it all again :D

      Must dash or I will miss it!


  1. How lovely are those photos, a real insight into Gibs celebrations :-)
    I’m not into long flowing posh dresses, but I do like that window pic.
    I’m glad Rhona wasn’t real.
    That pizza looks wonderful too, and the Peroni?, yes cheers K :-D


    • Thanks V.

      You wouldn’t catch me in one of those long frocks either but I did like the artristry of the display.

      It would have been nice to see a real Rhona close up, but not at her expense so yeah, plastic was better in this case.

      The pizza was good because it was absolutely full of toppings, they didn’t stint. I used to go and get pizzas from a different place (since changed hands) and what do you do when you have twenty minute to wait apart from order a Peroni ? :)

      Interestingly A was saying he figured you got a better pizza if you turned up and ordered it and waited than if you rang up and collected it. I suppose there is the delay factor, but people also get to see you and chat.

      Anyway, today was curry day – although not a free delivery. Just made at home :D


  2. I’ve really enjoyed these last three posts, though visiting grandsons and a dicky internet connection have made commenting difficult. But I AM reading. :-)


  3. Interesting, despite Quentin Bryce, the GG of Australia, announcing the Diamond Jubilee will be celebrated “with a host of national and community events throughout the Commonwealth”, so far I’ve only seen TV news reports and heard re-ignited monarchy v. republic debate on morning radio about which I unfashionably don’t have an opinion either way. Those colourful & festive photos were a great virtual visit to Gib’s Diamond Jubilee Sunday. Except in W.A. Australians are given a public holiday this coming Monday for [one of] the Queen’s birthday and it may be celebrations will occur over the course of the weekend, and so I to will raise a glass then. 60 years is a remarkable accomplishment :)


    • I think you read my mind. I was thinking of a separate post about the monarchy for Clouds as it fits with the current Jubilee theme, and like you I am equally unfashionable, having no strong view either way. Appreciate it’s more of an issue in Aus (and elswhere in the Commonwealth eg Jamaica).

      In sixty years, I don’t think she’s done too badly. Rather her than me. I should have mentioned the holiday status this weekend, I’ll add it to today’s post.


  4. (Having to back track a bit – been racing by, but interrupted and unable to leave comment)
    Finally the mystery of Rhona solved! (Thought you might have a circus retiree grazing there somehow)
    Noticed the bagpipes ( and I’m sure clapping was sufficient)
    We all vote for the olives on the pizza! YUM
    Looks like quite a party


    • I had a few other pix of the bagpipes but not worth posting sadly.

      I was well relieved to see Rhona was no more than a piece of plastic. Not much space to graze in Gib either unless she was let loose up the Rock. Anyways seems this Rhona eats coins and paper.

      There were loads of olives, totally delicious. The last time I made one at home, I didn’t have any olives. ‘I can eat pizza without cheese,’ declared Partner ‘but not without olives.’ Says it all!


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