After Easter the most of the Scandinavians leave the island, but we can already see how they start decreasing in amount. This week we haven't had as many dancers as last week and after a couple of weeks they will all be gone. Many Scandinavians don't come back before in October.
We were invited to the Scandinavian Tourist church for a nice supper Friday afternoon. It was a long time since we last payed a visit there and it was so fun to meet everybody. The staff at the church are very nice people and it's easy to spend time with them. When we go there it's more like them entertaining us and we can for ones just relax.
We don't have much time to be with all we know when we work six nights a week. We also try to keep our nights off as our own nights, when we can just do what we like to, and don't have any appointments. We need that when seven nights out in restaurants would make us feel like we don't have any private life at all. It would be nice if we could go out with everybody who come to the island, but one day off is not enough time to make it possible.
Some of the guests at the church. The pastors wife Ulla-Britt with the microphone.
Here we sit, Clas and me, in the middle of the night waiting for the first qualification race of the Grand Prix 2009. It starts 5 o' clock in the morning and we have decided to watch it. Oh, we won't get in bed before about 7 in the morning and I already feel tired... I hope I don't fall in sleep and miss it out.
It was our night off last night and we went to Greek Corner in Las Americas for dinner.
We always eat the same meal at Greek Corner and that is one that is called the Greek Mesa. It's really lovely and I recommend you to try it while you are on Tenerife!
Greek Corner was the first place where we started playing when we moved down to Tenerife 2004 and we know Selim, the owner, and the most of the waiters well. They are always so nice to us and it's a delight to have dinner there. To be honest I already long for next time we will go there.
We sat at a table next to the window and the view was amazing. We could see La Gomera, the neighbor island.
The main course. Like many times before I forgot to take the photo but I can tell you it was Greek meatballs, a stick with grilled chicken, Moussaka, Salad and rice.
Our friends Mick and Frances and Hayley and Silvia are here on Tenerife now and yesterday we had a lunch with them at Hooters. It was very nice weather and we all got some more tan. Mick is not on the picture when he was the one who took the photo. If you look carefully you can see me behind all the beer glasses + my legs under the table.
My energy is now coming back and I am busy doing a lot of things in our home. I have to clean, do ironing, plan outfits etc. We both feel so lucky when we finally become better. It has been tough to be ill for about one month.
We get e-mails almost every day, from people we know, and many will soon come to Tenerife + there is a lot of friends here right now who we have learned to know during the last years. I think we will be very busy the coming weeks and it will be so fun to play.
After Easter all the Scandinavians leave and then we go back to the normal again. Then our audience contains a lot of British, German and Dutch tourists and we don't get as many couple dancers like we have now. The audience goes down with about 50%, but already in June it starts coming up again. May and December are the weakest months of the year.
In the summertime we have many Country music fans and they know a lot about the songs and the artists and they sit and listen carefully the whole night through which is fun too. We get a better contact with the audience when they sit and listen and we need to concentrate more on what we do when there is no dancers who keep up the show.
In July-August a lot of younger tourists arrive and we mix our repertoire with new country songs that are more tough and rock'n roll than the oldie-goldie ones that we play now. Then I sing more Shania Twain, Gretchen Wilson, LeAnn Rhimes etc.
During September-December we get a lot of line dancers and we many nights play line dance the whole night through and some of the dancers almost don't get to sit down at all.
It's said the tourism will go down this summer and it will be very tough for many restaurants. Tui and Thompson cut down their travels to Tenerife with15% and that is a lot of planes when they are the biggest tour operators here on the island.
It's really a shame when the Scandinavians never get to be here in the summer time. We have sun from a blue sky almost every day from middle of April until October and it's not too hot when we get a calm breeze from the Atlantic Ocean. It's really lovely and the Canary islands are for sure the best place where to be during the summer vacation. Many go to Turkey, Greece, Mallorca and the mainland where the temperatures reach up to 40 degrees and they have to stay inside the hotel in the daytime to not be burned. Here we have the perfect temperature (about +25-28) and many Spanish people leave the mainland and come here to enjoy the weather.
It was Clas birthday yesterday. We decided to dress up for dinner and take a taxi to restaurant Toro even when we both felt very weak.
Many times when we go out on town there are tourists who recognize us and they peek at us when they think we don't see it, and whisper our names to the other people in their company when they think we don't hear it etc. Normally I don't take much notice about it but last night I didn't like what happened.
We ended up at Toro by having two ladies at the next table. When we sat there eating one of them took forward her mobile phone and started playing around with it. Suddenly it said click and I understood she took a paparazzi photo of me in secret. I am not sure but I think I was stuffing the mouth with food at the moment when it said click.
How fun is that? And how fun is it to be photographed when you feel very weak and probably sit like a hay sack on the chair? And how fun is it to have paparazzi around you when you are out for a private meal with your husband? Why don't people show any respect? We are not monkeys in a zoo nor do we belong to the tourist attractions when we are out in private business! It would absolutely have been okay if she had asked us for a photo, but I don't like when people secretly try to take stupid photos of us.
When she handed over the phone to show her friend the photo she looked at me and I couldn't help it but I showed her with an expression on my face that I had seen what she had been doing. She was giggling when she understood she had been caught red-handed, but looked very satisfied like she had got a scoop or something in her phone camera. Sigh!
Tonight when we went out for dinner we sat at a table behind the bar so that the most of the guests couldn't see us. It's less stressful to get to eat in private without having people staring at you like you would be a ghost or something.
We have got many calls the last days from people who ask when we will start playing again. We will start tomorrow night!
We are very sorry that some of you don't get to see us much this time you visit Tenerife, but hope for a better luck next time. It's the same problem every year in February - March. Then we always get the cold and we are ill for many weeks. Would we have to take the influenza injection next winter...? I had the injection some years ago, when I worked on the ferry, but it did not help that time and I still got an influenza that lasted through the whole winter.
This year we first got a normal cold and after some nights it felt like we will be okay. But then it suddenly came back worse than ever before and caused inflammation in the sinuses and down in the lungs and high fever. Not even the penicillin seams to help and we still get the fever back every now and then, and we are very weak and cough until the brains almost explode. I am so tired of being ill now and hope that we will not be ill any more this year as soon as we can get rid of this one.
We have been living on Tenerife for many years and it's first now that I have started making fruit drinks. You take papaya, mango, bananas, plums, kiwi fruits or seedless grapes or whatever fruits you have and mash them with some juice, yoghurt or ice cream by using the mixer. You also can mix berries like strawberries, raspberries, blueberries or blackberries which you some times can find in the fruit shop. Really delicious drinks!
Clas don't like to have anything else to eat than tomato soup and I decided to make a salad to myself. This salad is very delicious. It contains iceberg lettuce, ruccola lettuce, feta cheese, black olives, cucumber, dill and red onion. You normally have tomatoes in it but I am sensitive to tomatoes and that's why you don't see any in my salad. Sometimes I put pepper in it instead but I didn't have any at home this time.
When we came home from work Sunday night I felt I had fever again but I thought it will better the next day. Monday when it was our day off I was very bad and I stayed in the bed the whole day with high fever, a terrible muscular pain, headache, and a cruel cough. Clas was nursing me and brought me everything I needed and gave me massage for the pain. In the end of the night he started telling me he was feeling like he is getting the illness too.
Today when we woke up I was feeling much better. It felt like the antibiotics I have got finally have started doing the job and I only had muscular pain today + the cough. Clas on the other hand is now very bad and he has high fever and is coughing like crazy. In the afternoon we understood he is not gonna make it tonight and he called La Karina and told we can't play tonight.
Oh, what a shame! I hope this is the last attack now because we are both so tired of being ill. It takes all the energi out from us and the last weeks we haven't been doing much else than sleeping and resting in the daytime to make it in the nights.
Clas is having such a high fever now that he can't go and see the doctor but he has started eating my antibiotics. He has exactly the same symptoms and will go and get more of it as soon as he get some power to do it. *smile* Yes! We know that you would not eat a medicine that is ordered to an other person but what can we do? He has to start the treatment to get quickly out of it, and he can't see the doctor when his temperature is too high.
He says we will play tomorrow, but I am not sure if he's gonna make it. We'll see! I tell you tomorrow, in the afternoon, if we are gonna play or not.
Many line dancers visited us last night and the restaurant was packed with guests til the last chair. Some of the dancers knew the line dance called Galway Girls and I made a video clip when they were dancing it in the break. I haven't learned the dance yet but think I'll learn it soon when it is a quite popular dance.
It's our day off tomorrow and I will spend the day in the bed when I have got fever and a terrible headache + is coughing like crazy. I have now started eating penicillin and hopefully that means I will get better soon.
It was a lovely crowded night at Country Grill Karina last night. Many couple dancers and line dancers visited us and the dance floor turned out to be too small, like many times before. What can we do? There is no space for a bigger floor!
Our dream is to one day get to play at a real big place where it's possible to have a real big dance floor. It's not fun when our dancing guests have to sit down only because the floor is too packed. We have also learned that big dance floors bring more people in and we wish there would be space enough for everybody to dance in the same time. Many of the songs we play fit all the dance styles and that's when the floor becomes too small.
Sunday nights at La Karina have turned out to be line dance nights when many of our British line dancing friends visit us. Then we play more line dance songs than the other nights when the audience contains 80-90% Scandinavians. But we mix the repertoire with line dance songs every night if we just get to know that there are line dancers in the audience.
Please, arrive in good time these coming weeks, to be sure you get in and get a good table. It's a lot of tourists here right now and more and more people start visiting our venue. Many come and see us every night!
You can book a table if you are planning to have the dinner at the restaurant. At La Karina we start 8.30 but to be absolutely sure you will get in you need to be there before 8 o'clock. If the restaurant is packed and you don't get in you can try to wait and see if somebody is leaving after a while. That has many times ended with a good luck when some of the guests are leaving earlier.
I watched a few programs called "Lyxfällan", over the internet, from Sweden (TV3.se) last night. Translated to English the program would be called "The luxury trap". It's anyhow about people who waist a lot of money without thinking about it, and then two experts of economics come and help them to look at their finances and help them to start shopping in a more economical way and to save a lot of money.
Oh dear! While I watched the programs I started making an overview about how much money we spend every month and, I tell you, it was a lot more money than I knew! We could easily spend some Euros less per month and that without living like poor rats. He,he! Really something to think about in this time of world financial crisis! But it needs to be said that nor Clas or me do like the people in the programs who take loans to finance their luxury life. We only spend our own money!
One of the biggest mistake we do is that we don't shop food. Our refrigerator is empty the most of the time and because of that we go out on town all the time when we like to have something to eat. Exactly like one of the couples in the programs who called the pizza delivery as soon as they felt hungry. It's easy and quick to do it and you don't get any dishes, but it costs a lot of money!
Here a normal breakfast/lunch for two people cost about 20-35 Euros and it costs the same when we go out and have a night snack when we get home from work in the nights. If we just would buy the stuff ourselves it would not cost more than 5-10 Euros per meal! Now you probably think that the food shopping can't be the only way in which we waste money, and I agree...You are right! But I have chosen to focus on the food shopping now...
We always have the dinners at the restaurant in the nights, before we start playing, and that means we never have to make a dinner, which is nice. Because of that I think we are not allowed to complain if we have to prepare the other meals ourselves. Don't you think so too?
Now there's gonna be a change! Today I have been out shopping a lot of food and fruits and we had the night snack at home tonight and it wasn't bad at all. My hope is now that we will be able to keep the refrigerator filled and in that way save a lot of money. But there is a big problem and that is when you hardly can't find anything nice to buy in the shops here on Tenerife. It's not like in Finland!
When I shop food in Finland I find a lot of stuff that I long for, but here the most of the stuff don't taste good and we are already fed up with the most of the good things you can find. I don't promise that we will make it and save money, but we will make a try and hope for the best! Please, keep your thumbs up!
Sometimes people think that I am complex when I try to keep things in private. But I tell you! Some people in Sweden are much worse than me! They don't like to buy toilet paper when somebody can understand that they are going to use it!
I read a lot of comments on a famous Swedish blog tonight and some of the ladies said they avoid to buy toilet paper when somebody see it. If they had problem to buy condoms or other intimate products I could understand it, but toilet paper is in my opinion a normal daily product that everybody use. If you never visit the toilet you have got a serious problem! Even the Kings and the Queens do every now and then sit on toilet thrones! Some people also said they have problem to visit the toilet when their partner is in the house.
He,he! I sit here right now with a big roll of toilet paper in front of me and every now and then I take a long piece of it and blow my nose. My nose is running again and it feels like the cold is doing a restart. *sighing* Oh dear! To be honest I pinch my nose with a bottom-paper! What a shame! :-)
I don't even notice what people buy in the shops! And if somebody is carrying toilet paper in the shop I don't start wondering about how they are going to use it. Don't we all need toilet paper or am I wrong? I will however continue buying toilet paper and I don't have any problem with it.
I am sorry the picture turned out to be so dark that you can't see the details. Looks terrible! It's a suede vest with long fringes and it has a brooch on the left side... It's a shame when you can't see all the small details and buttons on the vest. The boots have got long shafts going all the way up to the knees with a long lacing in the back.
Now we have a party going on here! We have got Revitty bread from Finland and chocolate and salmiakki Dumles and garlic cucumbers etc. It was really lovely to get home from work tonight and have a night snack.
We share the sweets carefully and tonight we decided to have 8 Salmiakki Dumles each and I enjoy mine now while I am blogging. Yum-yum!! My brothers' wifes' sister Eva and her husband Börje brought all these delicacies to us. Thank you so much!
We had a lovely night at La Karina last night. We were crowded and the guests were dancing like they always do. We look forward to play tomorrow night again.
In the night we went out for a nice dinner to "Toro tapas and grill" in Los Cristianos. This is our favorite restaurant and I like to recommend it to everybody.
First we had bread that we dipped in a special oil and vinegar from Torres. Really lovely!
Starter: Fillet steak carpaccio with Manchego cheese and olives. Oh, it was so delicious!
Pork fillet steak " Sangre de Toro". It was the forth time I had it!
The bill and two small Baileys shots.
On the way back home we went in to a restaurant where we have played before to listen to Graham Gold and have a drink. Graham had a real good show going on...
There we met this couple from Denmark who have visited our show many times the last years.
The night ended with a shock when we suddenly, in front of the guests, were told to leave the restaurant. The daughter of the restaurant owner thought that we came there to take customers from them and told us to leave and never come back again. Many people know that we have been recommending this place when they have asked where to go in Los Cristianos. We have never been against the restaurant or tried to get customers from them and it was really a shock when we were told to leave or they will call the police. It feels very sad when a cooperative scheme of many years' is finished like this, but we are not angry at anybody when we think it's probably an act out of fear. We are very crowded in Las Americas and there is no reason for us to try to take customers from anybody. Our guests are themselves looking for us, and many have found us even when they from the beginning have been told that we have left the island, which is a lie. Our conviction or policy is always to bless and help and we both believe doing the opposite will cause you a lot of problem and bring you out of the grace of God and his blessings.
I made a video clip last night when the line dancers were dancing, but when I checked the camera a while ago there was no video clip. I don't know why it has disappeared. I think I pushed the right button when I finished it but maybe not...?!
Clas surprised me with a night snack when we got home tonight. He had bought big prawns and white wine and had boiled eggs to have with it. He also made garlic bread in the oven and now I feel stuffed and will go to bed instead of editing a video clip that has disappeared. Good night! No! I will do one more post and publish the outfit from last night before I leave! Good Night!
The old shopping problem continues in our family. Nobody of us like to go to the grocery and buy something to eat and the refrigerator is empty in the mornings and empty in the nights.
Last night after work we went to restaurant La Salud by taxi to have a night snack, but they were closed. We went to the neighbor restaurant instead and had some tapas.
This coming morning when we'll wake up, there will be nothing to have for breakfast again and we'll have to go out on town to eat. It would be okay, but the problem is that I have to wash the hair and style it + put on a makeup before I am ready to go, and it takes about 45 minutes to one hour.
Clas is always walking back and forth in the apartment with his big boots on, while he is waiting for me to be ready, and it makes me feel so stressed. I run back and forth and try to remember to put on everything but many times I forgot the jeweleries , the ear rings, the lipstick or the perfume and when we get outside the house I have to run in again. It's really a mess and I hate it!
Sometimes when this happens I really wish I was a man! Nobody expect them to have a perfect makeup or new painted nails or the right outfit or even the right smell.