Tuesday, May 10, 2011
the canary sings
After assuming the vice-presidency, John Adams told a story about two brothers. One went to sea. The other became vice-president. Neither was heard from again.
Well, I have never been vice-president, but I have been at sea. For the past seven days.
We are now in Tenerife. One of the Canary Islands. Our first land fall. We will then have two seas days, and stops at Majorca, Corsica, and Rome.
So far, these seven days at sea have been what I have come to expect from cruises. Mediocre (and painfully abundant) food – with the excerption of some outstanding meals in the specialty restaurants. Indifferent entertainment. And plenty of time to either sit alone in the sun and read – or to develop old and new friendships.
If that sounds like my life in Melaque, you will not be far from the mark. With one exception. The sea. For whatever reason, being surrounded by water on a giant ship offers its own therapy – for the psyche, if not the waistline.
This is my third trip to Tenerife. In the past, I have visited the island’s star natural attraction – Mt. Teide. The tallest mountain in Spain.
It is a magnificent place. Like most volcanoes, you get a taste for how fiery mountains can remake the landscape. But I come from a place where volcanoes created next to every vista.
This trip was different. Roy suggested a tour of the various gardens of the island. And it was a wise choice. We both strongly dislike bus tours. but this one was fine – mainly because the bus was only half-populated.
To get to the three gardens we viewed, the bus took us through several of the villages on the north and west sides of the island. The place is beautiful with its European towns, pocket-sized banana plantations, and vistas with steep hills slipping into some very rough surf.
I am always on the lookout for my next retirement home – and Tenerife may make the list. It is beautiful. Surrounded by water. And has a strong cultural life.