Otro día, another day

And your Gibraltar sleuthhound is here with breaking news. Or rather breaking glass.

Wandering out this morning Partner encountered a dog walker we know (OK, so we know most dog walkers around our streets).

‘Look at the jeweller’s window on your way down,’ he said.

‘I asked the police if they had caught them yet, but they hadn’t. That means they won’t.’

Long gone across the frontier presumably. We never heard a sound, and it is only five minutes walk away. They’d bent the grille and smashed the glass with a sledgehammer and grabbed the lot. Odd, on a Saturday night, as there are normally people walking around at all hours in the early morning coming home from clubs or parties.

Perhaps they were Spaniards belatedly celebrating Día de Andalucía which falls on 28 February?

This was instituted to celebrate the referendum of the Andalucían people to become an autonomous community back in 1980. A bit like Gib’s national day on Sept 10 celebrates their decision to retain British links.

Andalucîa also nominates a favoured son or daughter on this day. This year it is Miguel Ríos, a singer from Granada. Can’t say he is to my taste so no linky. Look him up on youtube if you want. Rock, but nothing special.

The next day, 1 March, was St David’s Day, ie the Welsh National Day. One wears a daffodil and eats leeks or something like that. We did neither. Welsh Partner drank beer.

I did however, get an email newsletter from a company I use, Ethical Wares, based in Wales, which said:

St David (Dewi Sant) was a Welsh Bishop during the 6th Century who has since become regarded as the patron saint of Wales.

He was also a Vegetarian or Vegan and his monastic followers were forbidden to eat meat.  His monks pulled their ploughs by hand as they weren’t permitted to use animals!

Good one, St David.

Which leads me neatly onto another clever little segue (one has to use these words on WordPress), whereupon I shall, somewhat belatedly, moan about rich tosser British princes shooting animals in Spain, or more specifically in Andalucía, and then launching a campaign about endangered animals.

All the news stories very carefully pointed out that RTBPs were not hunting illegally. Well I don’t care whether they were or they weren’t. It’s not as though they are starving is it? They are doing it for fun. They are no different to the Spanish royal family who decided to go big game hunting two years ago.

I’m neither pro nor anti-monarchy, but gratuitous shooting of animals is unnecessary. Can’t they find anything else to do with their time and leisure and money? The only reason for not getting rid of them, is that you would then need a head of state. But I’m beginning to think that might be better. Charles (ie Prince of Wales) has always been pro-hunting. They should get off their privileged backsides and go and work dahn t’ pit or in t’ mill or even in a boring office, and learn how to save money instead of getting big handouts on the back of taxpayers.

On the back of the Marius the giraffe news story, you would think someone, somewhere, might manage to learn something about PR.

Dear Royals,

It is not advisable to go hunting animals the day before launching a campaign to stop illegal poaching. To the average person in the street that looks hypocritical regardless of whether or not the boar and deer you killed were done so legally. And to the average journalist it makes a cracking story.

Yours coldly


How can these people rationalise supporting the WWF and endangered species and merrily go shooting for entertainment. More to the point, they shouldn’t get caught doing it if that’s what they want to do. Shit for brains?

Perhaps they should be fed to the lions, like Marius the giraffe, because clearly their genes are less than exceptional, just like his were?

Meanwhile, I’m wandering around Gib and noticed some strange men with hi-vis jackets and sticks. Ape management or something it said on the back of their jacket.

I asked what he was doing, as Little Snowy clambered up the steps to find his monkey friends.

‘Scaring them off to go back up the Rock where they belong.’

‘People shouldn’t feed them,’ I said.

‘That’s true, and the same people who feed them, then complain. These are wild animals and they bite when people touch them.’

Well, I don’t touch them. We all have our own space, and coming down the town and looking cute seriously helps tourism.

Now do I suspect a conspiracy theory here? (I usually do).

We have taxi drivers who charge a healthy sum (for them) to take people up the Rock to see the monkeys. Why go up the Rock to see the monkeys if you can see them wandering around Main Street?

I have seen taxi drivers feed monkeys (illegal) so tourists can get pretty piccies. And then kick or strike out at said monkeys to send them away when they have served their purpose.

Now we have more aggression against the monkeys. With aggression comes fear. And with fear, comes more aggression from monkeys who are harmless if you leave them alone.

So come on you down there, little officer. Come up here and we'll play chase on the roofs. And down the drainpipes.
So come on you down there, little officer. Come up here and we’ll play chase on the roofs. And down the drainpipes.

Today we spoke to another monkey enforcement officer aka ape environment management.

We agreed that more rubbish bins were needed and she said the taxi drivers were the biggest culprits for feeding them.

Stupid policy. Stupid people.

And we have a government minister who happens to be – yes – a taxi driver.

Job creation for some and keeping others in a job too. While victimising monkeys.

Just minding my own business, on a chair, and posing for a few photos. What's wrong with that?
Just minding my own business, on a chair, and posing for a few photos. What’s wrong with that?

84 comments on “Otro día, another day

    • We’ve only had Edward since the Queen came a zillion years ago, so hopefully the macaques will be safe from the royals, if not from tourists and monkey enforcement officers. I did wonder about your thoughts on the whole Marius thing I have to say. Mine were twofold: 1) appalling animal rights and 2) idiotic PR.


      • Had written an impassioned comment when the story first broke but then either filed it away or deleted it. With 27 years in the zoo business, I thought the killing, not euthanizing, of Marius was uncalled for. As reported, there were several zoos willing to take him. A live giraffe is certainly a better educational tool than a dead one. So he would not be allowed to contribute his genes to the pool of giraffe DNA for now. There may have come a time in the future it could have been used. There was a program called ISIS, http://bit.ly/OUzBmi that aided zoological organizations to control breeding. I certainly do not ever remember hearing of ISIS recommending the death of an animal to prevent DNA dispersal. I think the zoo took the proper action is dismissing the director(?) but others perhaps should have been dismissed also for not saying no. Lions at Longleet were culled for the same reason. Similar disciplinary action was taken I believe.

        Unfortunately zoos are a necessity, for good or bad. The real reasons for their existence are rarely mentioned but that is another story with billions of chapters. Killing a perfectly healthy animal in captivity is absolutely despicable. As was written, what kind of example does this give the public especially when they are contributing time, money and energy to save animals in the wild.

        Closing the facilities referred to would be the ultimate for many but they do have an educational and wildlife survival value. Proper management is imperative and it looks like public input is now needed.

        Unfortunately humane DNA in the human makeup has a lot to be desired.


        • Thanks for that reply. When I read about the story you came to mind immediately as an experience professional in zoo management. Me, I can talk about the fact that it was disastrous PR from a pro perspective, but my knowledge of zoo management, ethics, raison d’etre is zilch.

          I thought ISIS was the reason why the zoo boss wouldn’t let Marius go elsewhere, because they didn’t abide by ISIS regs and he did, hence needing to kill Marius because he was just a common pleb.

          Have they dismissed him? I’ve not followed the story up. I was hoping they would feed him to the lions along with the bloodthirsty British royals. Did they feed the Longleat Lions to the lions I wonder? I’m being flippant about a very unfunny subject, sorry. I’ve been to Longleat. They were beautiful animals. I guess you’ve probably seen them in their native habitat in Africa rather than southern England.

          Your point about using his genes in the future is an interesting one though.

          It all borders on eugenics though, whether animal or idiot people.

          Anyway, if you find your post, or you want to write a new reflective one about the whole issue, I’d love you to write a guest post. I don’t have the knowledge as I say, but you do. You could write on yours and I could link or reblog, but people don’t usually go back to the link. No T&Cs or editing, you write what you want, I’ll double check for spelling if you like (American acceptable from an American ;) )


  1. I’m a Monarchist and scared of the alternative- President Blair Aaarggh, and the panoply of the Monarchy do bring in much needed tourist money to the Country’s coffers.I do however totally agree with you about the hunting, especially by someone who purports to support animal welfare.
    Hunting for fun should be banned.

    I can’t tell you the disgust I still feel with the zoos that have recently killed fit animals rather than give enough consideration to re-homing them, and there was no shortage of offers.The monkey’s on the rocks are no different, why allow them to breed and then cull them? The idea of ensuring no births is a much better idea. For the safety of residents like you they should ensure that taxi drivers who feed them are heavily fined so they’re not enticed into town to start pinching your shopping. Of course it’s a little late with the stable door just now.
    xxx Sending Hugs xxx


    • I think the alternative is not good, but I do think they have ideas above themselves. These aren’t the days of Henry VIII and they need to learn that they are rich, privileged and ambassadors of our country. They are on public show all the time for which they receive mega bucks. If they don’t have any brains, they need to employ advisors who do, and can actually open their mouths instead of sucking arse.

      The zoo issue is terrible. The only good thing poor Marius achieved was highlighting this was common practice.

      Well, there is meant to be a sterilisation programme. And of course they are an endangered species. So they should be treating them with a bit more care and respect. And like the monarchy, they are tourist attraction.

      Partner had two (full) shopping bags the other day. ‘You, largaté’ (go away) or words to that effect. At the moment the monkeys in the town are pretty young and not vicious. People should be sensible, but tourists love them, Gibbos are frightened of them, and a few of us respect that we share the same space. I doubt they would steal our tins of San Miguel.


  2. I have zero tolerance for those who do not appreciate the fact that animals have emotions just as we do. I can’t abide anyone who baits animals or is cruel to or kills animals for entertainment or sport. People who do get into that stuff are thoroughly mucked up in the head and of that I have no doubt, Before I start ranting and send my blood pressure soaring I just say best wishes for a happy weekend and move along towards my snow shovel. Yes, it’s snowing again and it’s time to split kindling and pack in more firewood. :(


    • They are sentient beings after all. And they often behave far better than we do. If not always. But then I have been vegetarian for more than 25 years.

      You managed to get in on here before there were too many comments! so nice to hear from you. We’ve got some firewood stored at the finca (picked up from I don’t remember where) but haven’t used it for years. Just not cold enough. Have you got any skis? (cross country) Otherwise good luck with the snow. We tended not to shovel in the past, as snow was safer than sheet ice after snow had been moved. But you live in a very different part of the world. Sending you warm wishes.


  3. Sounds credible enough to me…confine them to where you can charge tourists to see them, happy taxi drivers.
    What about confining the taxi drivers and providing proper litter bins.

    As to the gun toting royals….apart from the other question of why they are where they are in the first place…it seems to be a case of:

    I can shoot animals for fun because my friend has shooting rights
    You can’t shoot animals for money because you don’t have property rights.


    • Fine idea. The taxi drivers are one very hard sell. They really try and persuade tourists NOT to take the cable car up the Rock. ‘Taxi drivers den’ is sounding good :) Especially half way up the Rock and out of sight and mind.

      We do have a lot of litter bins to be fair, it’s the domestic rubbish from all the flats that causes the problems. Upwards of 30 flats in our street alone and all the ones in Main St use the 4 small wheelie bins. Everyone empties rubbish daily. t’s farcical. Oh, and no Saturday collection so double the rubbish on Sunday ….

      The royals don’t seem to have learned any lessons. I’m ambivalent about them, but I can’t think of any of them I remotely respect or ‘like’. The queen works hard. As did Anne at some point, without too much publicity and was even seen wearing practical clothes and flat shoes in Africa. I think the genes malfunctioned with the men who seem to be a total waste of space.


      • How do people produce so much rubbish…though four bins for that amount of housing doesn’t seem adequate.
        I’ve just had a look at our household rubbish; even here in the land of the plastic bag we have a hard job filling the plastic inner of a feed sack in a couple of weeks.

        My objection to the royals is based on the existence of the prerogative powers and the use of them by the government to bypass parliament…. but apart from that, if the monarch’s role is purely ceremonial – greeting all the rag and tag of foreign leaders – then just pull a name out of a hat every year.

        And if mine were to be pulled out then bags me greeting Robert Mugabe….


        • We have more rubbish in Gib than Spain :( The can and bottle banks are miles away, so apart from that and kitchen towel for my snotty nose, we have little else. In Gib we have more packaging :( Then there are the shops. And the cigarette cartons for the smugglers …. Six might work if they emptied every night. Sat off is the problem. Never mind monkey enforcement officers, take on more bin drivers.

          I don’t have an objection to royals per se. I wouldn’t even mind if they used the prerogative in their own right, but they just do what they are told so where is the value there?

          I don’t think you have quite the same cachet as Elizabeth Windsor, although Helen Devries certainly sounds better than our birth names ;) Who would I meet? Oh yes, any American warmongering president. Tautology as they all are by definition.

          Queen Roughseas; Hello little man. Please stop invading the world. And tell your people not to be so wasteful.

          Thank you.

          End of conversation


          • Shouldn’t she be Saxe Coburg Gotha, or something similar…..though if Victoria hadn’t taken Albert’s name I suppose it might even be Conroy…

            I wasn’t thinking of speaking to Mugabe….more of getting the coronation Sword of Temporal Justice out of store and laying about me.


          • Wasn’t it a PR war-related move? As I vaguely remember. Not too clever having a Germanic sounding royal family when we all gaily shooting at each other.

            Perhaps I could use it when you have finished with it. If you ever do. I’ll be going for greedy bankers and (corrupt) politicians.


          • First World War…they changed it to Windsor…
            Yes, I’ll be happy to pass the sword on to to you…sounds as if you have a full time job ahead of you!


          • I’ve got a full-time job with a flipping Podenco who has just smashed my last flute style glass of cava (and there was some in) and is now wrecking my shoelaces having failed to find sufficient alchohol.

            The sword will have to wait.


          • I am in awe of his teeth. He is very affectionate. He just has wicked teeth that sometimes catch when playing. Supreme guard dog. Far too intelligent for my good. You keep the sword, I’ll keep the Pod.


  4. I don’t imagine that our animal populations will ever be safe (or left to themselves, or saved from extinction) while economics dictates policy. Or if not policy, behaviour! Too bad we have traditionally had so little regard for the natural laws which keep populations in balance and allow for healthy diversity. *sigh* We have made a collective royal mess of things, haven’t we?


    • And greed economics will always dictate policy/behaviour.

      While I think it is sad to see species go extinct, it is a fact of evolution. It’s always happened. What I dislike is our ineffectual meddling, and in so many cases, we have caused the extinction eg destroying natural habitats and polluting everywhere.

      I went to a great lecture at our local hall by our Gib museum professor. It really put things into perspective. How we are a tiny blip in the scheme of things. How many ice ages and warmings we have had, how animals have changed as well as humans and our predecessors.

      A royal mess certainly. And like our (British and Spanish) royals, we have an over-inflated sense of our own self-importance.


  5. “Salamander”, a Belgian drama series, has made me think of Republicanism while normally I am a weak monarchist- as David says, better than President Blair, or some pensioned off president if the post is weaker. In Salamander the Palace is corrupt and everything under and supporting it.

    I knew a vegetarian who would eat game, because objection to farming practices was the basis of her ethical vegetarianism.

    I rather liked wotsisname’s Ivory idea- destroy the ancient art works, it is better than destroying the species.


    • I think the alternative is the problem. Look at the French Presidents, let alone American ones and their terrible circus that happens every time it is re-election time. They could feed half of Africa and cut out poaching with the amount of money they spend on that. OK, I don’t know that, but you get the idea.

      One needs a head of state. I think the Queen does a far better job than many elected ones. I dislike Charles, and his sons. Certainly the young ones lack gravitas and he is just pompous, hypocritical and anachronistic.

      I don’t know Salamander. I don’t have a TV.

      Well then she wasn’t vegetarian. Gametarian perhaps? Sort of like pescetarian? She might have objected to modern-day farming practices – and rightly so in many cases – but she clearly didn’t object to having animals killed for her to eat. That’s not really ethical vegetarianism.

      I’m on the side of the arty people with that one. What good does it serve? It won’t send a powerful message to ivory poachers at all. They won’t give two hoots if the British Royal Family destroys all their ivory. They’ll probably think it will make ivory works even more desirable as it becomes even rarer in the world. Does it help dead elephants? What wotsisname should do is stop killing animals at all for sport/fun/entertainment. So should his brother and so should his dad.


  6. I’m a republican and proud. Monarchy ? You are dead right – shit for brains. From going to parties dressed as Nazis to hunting we keep being told that the new young royals will be different. Obviously not. It was funny to see this PR disaster roll out. A couple of days later our noble princes were photographed tossing sandbags in flooded Windsor. Nice touch. Bit of balance. President Blair ? President Cameron ? It’s just a name. They act like that anyway and they get voted in or out. I suppose the idiotic inbreeds are here to stay though ….. I raise a clenched fist for the working classes. :)


    • I like the historical side of the monarchy. I don’t like to lose tradition that is so much a part of our culture. But everyone needs to move with the times (even me, sadly) and these privileged arrogant young gits have no idea about real life, and how they need to be seen to be hard-working and moral and ethical (ha!) to justify their position. Sure they go to university, and enrol in the armed forces, and marry commoners these days, but they still have shit for brains. Seems to me, they have all the faults of the past without any of the decent attributes and they are still living in a regal bubble.

      But seriously, who is managing their PR? It is appalling. Chucking a few sandbags around in a ‘help the poor people’ gesture? Not good enough. I did see the pix, and just ended up laughing. Too little too late.

      If I’d been managing the idiots I would have said:

      ‘Right you lot, stop messing around and start engaging what few brain cells you have. Get out there, and instead of talking about trashing the ivory part of mummy’s art collection, which makes no difference to you anyway, publicly say that you two prats will no longer shoot animals.’

      That would send a far bigger message out to people.

      Yes. Blair and Cameron did/do think they are presidents. Imagine having two like that at once. Nightmare scenario. To be fair, the queen is better behaved than our PMs.

      Up the Tooting Popular Front?


        • I loved Robert Lindsay in that as Wolfie. And the way his landlady always called him Foxy. And GBH was superb. Now you are making me want to write a post about good British (anti-est) drama series.


          • Yes, Robert Lindsay is one of my favourite actors (except for his silly family comedy recently but even he has to eat I guess). GBH was indeed superb.
            We were lucky enough some years ago to catch him on stage as Richard III and he was amazing. A great talent.


          • Luckily I’ve not seen that being TV-free.

            One of the other good ones was Hywel Bennett of course in Shelley. Too funny and sharp.

            We saw Michael Gambon in an Ayckbourn adaptation (ie shorter) of Othello at his Theatre in the Round in Scarborough (the old TITR).

            To my surprise, I saw Patrick Cargill in some play at Leeds Grand, and he was very good. He managed a brilliant mix of clever acting and slightly hamming it and playing to the audience. Not easy to do.

            I saw Ralph Fiennes in Coriolanus, and he appeared more like Leonard Rossiter. I wasn’t the only one to think so, the Telegraph review the following day said the same. Gambon and Cargill were better :D


  7. It could have been drunken Icelanders. 1st March is celebrated as ‘Beer Day’ in Iceland because this was the end of prohibition in 1989! Do you get many Icelanders in Gibraltar?


    • I met a Norwegian on Sat/Sun. Does that count? Seems near enough.

      We do get Scandinavians, but I don’t know about Icy people. Beer Day, amazing. Only one day though? That’s a bit like Women’s Day. Only allowed to celebrate it once a year. I think we should have a worldwide cleaning day and then I can leave it for the rest of the year.


  8. The badger cull we had, to enable cows to live, was a complete cock up as well.. Figures were showing how much bullshit we have to put up with. They should have given the guns to the royals and let them shoot the badgers. Probably done a better job, and kept them busy for six weeks. [By the way I disagree completely with the badger culling] I am not sure whether I am a royalist or not,, the alternative is not much better, in my mind.


    • Wasn’t there a cull in Wales that I read about? I don’t agree with culls of any type. We create problems and then we decide to kill animals to sort it out. Not responsible behaviour at all. Can’t say I’d be giving a gun to royal unless it was to shoot another one – at which the Spanish are notoriously famous :D

      Monarchy v republic. I’m like you. Which is the least worst? I’d be electing a royal for head of state. Save having self-serving politicos, but not necessarily having the automatic line of succession. Nice compromise. Don’t ask me who I’d choose though. Anne maybe? for her hard work and unglamorous image and I almost met her at a hospital opening. Or Edward, who waved at me when he came to Gib? :D


  9. I saw Andrew’s comment that I missed beer day in Iceland. How did I not know about that? I feel for animals. You know I have zero tolerance for any type of abuse.


    • I didn’t know about it either but as it coincided with Saturday and St David’s Day it was a given Beer Day here:D

      Me too. Currently trying to control my two abandoned dogs who are playing rough and tumble around the flat. Flat is a bit small though for a large GSD/husky and a flying Podenco!


  10. I love your letter to the royals lol. So what do you reckon, Spaniard says, Hey, amigo quiero un celebration, pero no tengo dinero. Yo, se vamos a robar una joyeria! No preocupes con el gales, estan bebiendo para dia de St. David. (rough, should do it.) ;)


  11. Part of the trouble, as I see it, is a misunderstanding (or maybe lack of agreement, I don’t know) of our overall role here in this place. To many, everything that exists is for immediate exploitation, regardless of the costs to other systems on the planet. See something–go get it; the thing’s yours.
    Now I won’t waste anyone’s time trying to put forward any kind of ethical argument on why living creatures are not the playthings of those with guns because, frankly, I am tired of the one-sided counter-arguments. I have heard then far too often and they can’t be argued with because they are so linear and one sided (sort of “they’re mine and I’m doing what I want and, oh by the way, I’m done listening to you now so stop trying to reason with me.”).
    I suppose it’s hard to be totally consistent when you’re rich, powerful and well-traveled like a royal but I have to say that the situation you described is kind of black and white. I am perplexed that the whole thing happened but then again, maybe not–“rich” does not correlate with “intelligent.”
    As for the robbery, where I live the majority of the crimes of that sort–theft; whether armed robbery or break-ins are generally done by lowlife types in search of the next drug fix. Sadly the goods were probably fenced for 5% or 10% of their value; an exchange for some oxy or coke. What a waste.


    • The smash and grab is actually a rare occurrence here, which is why I wrote about it. Plus it was hot off the press :D

      There are a number of jewellery shops on Main Street. Why that one?? Did they know there was no alarm? I’m guessing there wasn’t as we heard nothing, but there again, tucked up on our cosy little camping mats we hear little these days.

      Which ties in with your comment about see something – go get it.

      My side is pretty linear too though. I just do not see why anyone should kill animals for fun. Where is our compassion, our sensitivity, our responsibility? I don’t know what the alleged rationale is because I don’t get into those conversations. I would fall out with people. Permanently.

      A university friend sent me a photo of her first dog, a cocker spaniel who was struggling to get out of her arms as she is not a dog person. I don’t think she is an animal person actually. ‘He’s a working dog,’ she wrote proudly. Did she really have to say that? Everyone who knows me, knows I am vegetarian. I am hardly going to be saying ‘Oh goody, how many lovely animals is he going to help you kill?’

      It is very black and white isn’t it?

      “I want to do it so I will.”

      “It’s immoral, unethical, cruel, unnecessary and sick.”

      Depends on your point of view. Whether you are royal or just Jo/e whoever in the sticks who has a gun and enjoys shooting live animals as targets.

      But there again I’m not a fan of gun ownership laws. Guns are meant for one thing, and it isn’t protection.

      I laughed (snort of the day award, which I really must get up and running on my blog!) for saying rich does not correlate with intelligent. A much more polite way of saying shit for brains.


  12. I totally loved what you wrote about the royals and hunting! Our Swedish King is an avid hunter too, and I think — if my memory serves me right — he was the chairman of WWF Sweden (!) We got a new princess last week … Leonore, she was born in NYC, so I guess she’ll get dual citizenship :)

    Too bad about people feeding the monkeys, causing all that fear. It’s the same thing as with the ducks here in the pond. They stand right beside the big sign and feed them.


    • Thank you Reb.

      Isn’t it odd how all these royals seem to be presidents of WWF and merrily spend their spare time killing animals? Doesn’t matter which country you are looking at, they are all the same. Why can’t they put down their guns and go and do something more useful?

      I’ve lost touch on European royals since my Spanish TV packed up (obsessed with Euro royalty in Spain) and I stopped reading Spanish papers regularly.

      I had to look Madeleine up. A stunner :) And as he is British American with Austrian ancestry I wonder if Leonore is in line for four passports. Interesting O’Neill declined Swedish nationality.

      But looking up about Leonore, I thought the most touching story about her name was about Princess Lilliian. I cried. What a love story.Ooops crying again!!

      Older people are frightened and I can sympathise with that, but not with stupid tourists feeding them crisps for a quick photo and then clearing off back home or onto their next holiday. Maybe they don’t think about the impact of their actions. Maybe they don’t think.

      I don’t know if adding more info on the signs would help. Please don’t feed ducks/monkeys because …..


      • About feeding; it didn’t help here. For a while, I thought it did, but no.
        I did hear an explanation why O’Neill declined, it was perfectly valid, but I forget.
        Yes, that was such a love story! Princess Lilian and Prince Bertil.
        Our Queen Silvia is a commoner, but the old king died, just as they’d met so there was no problems for them getting married.


        • That’s a shame. I suppose it only works for a small minority. It would for me, but I’m not everyone.

          Maybe there’s a limit as to how many nationalities you can have? :D

          Here’s an interesting thread:

          Looks like he didn’t want to give up working. Or wanted the woman but not the Royal trappings :D

          Didn’t realise your queen was a commoner. Seems more common now, the one that really comes to mind is Mary Donaldson and Prince Frederik.


          • Hey … great link. I clicked on the Swedish link inside there, and remember now how it was; He wouldn’t have been able to go on making money/doing business. He just didn’t want to give up working, I guess. Probably didn’t want the trappings either :)

            Our king met Silvia at the Olympics in Munich 1972 — she was some kind of ‘hostess’ there, or whatever :) She’s German but grew up in Brazil ..


          • Thanks, I became quite interested after you mentioned it. Her story was fascinating too, having a long relationship with someone or other and then running off to American when it was over. I’m surprised she hasn’t just become Mrs O’Neill.

            So the story of your king and queen is mirrored by the young Danes, didn’t they meet at the Sydney Olympics, I think.


          • Yes, now that you mention it; I think they did [the Danes].

            I don’t know how it works, because the king’s sister; Christina … she was Princess Christina and then she married some guy and became Mrs. Magnusson. Still, she does retain the princess-title though.

            This little Leonore … it’s a big deal, last Sunday Te Deum was held in the “Storkyrkan” church.


  13. What do these people think they achieve by taking the life of a beautiful creature just because they can? If killing creatures with high-powered guns, telescopic and night sights makes them feel more manly, they must have some serious psychological issues. The hypocrisy of the royals is beyond belief.


  14. The Giraffe incident was horrifying! And shooting animals even legally while promoting a WWF campaign sounds baffling!! They do need to hire you pronto. Still chuckling at “Yours coldly” :-D


      • Not as far as I know, I assume they got clean away with it. If I’d have seen them with a sledgehammer I’d have ducked around the corner and then rang the police and legged it home asap. Or maybe the other way round :D


    • Poor old Marius. Such a mediocre giraffe with unexceptional genes and he made world news.

      It seems to be the done thing for royals of all nations to be a token head/representative of the WWF and espousing the cause of endangered species while shooting other ones legally. Perhaps they want the population of the endangered ones to be increased so they can shoot those too.

      I’m not sure I’d want to work for them. Bit of a walking disaster. I remember my mother’s letter-writing book explained Yours sincerely, faithfully and truly, in terms of warmth. Truly was not warm, it was somewhat chilly, so I wanted to go one further than that :D


  15. I often wonder how the monkeys fare on Gib. Sounds like animals everywhere else, they are used and abused and not allowed to be themselves. I went the other day to the Bouillon Castle here in Belgium and I was told there is a falconry presentation. I thought, oh, interesting, but how does that work with wild birds of prey? I’ll tell you how — these incredible creatures are tied with a cord to their leg that is just a few feet long, maybe three, and they are so depressed or anxious they either ignore the perch just a few inches off the ground and huddle right in the gravel or they call out incessantly and pace. It was horrible. I did not stay for the “show”. When will we learn to let animals be? Oh right, we WON’T because we can think of nothing but ourselves. Thanks for calling attention to a problem. Gonna write about the birds of prey later…


    • Used and abused sums it up for me. Used for tourism and then pushed off out of the way when they have served their purpose.

      That sounds awful. I doubt I would have gone anyway. We’ve seen sparrowhawks in our urban garden back in the UK, and soaring above us from time to time in Spain. That’s how it should be.

      Thanks for your thoughtful, if sad comment.


    • Ironically, I’m quite encouraged by the commenters on here who have voiced similar opinions. I thought I was a lone voice. However whether or not anyone does anything about it is another matter.


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