Men At Cards

Button rose on his last day a free man – I mean he has been with Jenny for 5 years so maybe not free. But not committed for eternity – well fairly committed, to have planned a wedding in a foreign country. But not tied down…. Yet.

The day was spent wandering the walls with his bride to be. He had been stuck in a final panic meeting with the wedding planner all yesterday so didn’t accompany our walk. So instead I took a lazy walk up to the fort overlooking the city gates. This outcrop of rock sitting in the harbour has been fortified with a seriously impressive castle. It’s perfectly positioned to be able to aim a really big gun at anyone approaching by sea or land. Just what you need to ensure peace/trade talks go smoothly.

The big guns have been removed, maybe melted down and made into toasters? But you can see where they used to sit because of the reinforced floor. There are large stone blocks at the centre of an arc of stone. I can only imagine this was a pivot point around which wheels traversed to aim the gun at approaching enemies. The size of the guns must have been huge. There was a large ornate copper (?) gun up there on a TK maxx quality wooden support. It was depressingly thin and tinny when I rapped my knuckles on it but I guess illustrates the point.

The stone walls of the fort must have absolutely sang when the real guns were fired. The ramparts step up and back from the seaside. There are large arched entrances to the fort on this level where I imagine the gunpowder and projectiles were stored. If you were on the lower levels you must have lost your hearing having these things firing overhead.

From up here I spotted in the small bay below, a nice looking cafe. Here is where I went with my laptop to do a bit of blogging. It was the best place I had found yet. Just sitting in the shade with an apple juice, looking out over the bay. People lounging around on brightly coloured towels spread out on the concrete jetty. A few people bobbing in the crystal clear blue water on orange kayaks, trying to maneuver around the clueless snorkelers. Some chilled out music in the background heard under the strange babble of friendly foreign chatter. I was here for about 2 hours just enjoying writing, drinking and people watching.

I met the Button brigade up at the villa after a late lunch from a very tasty bakery. I had myself a baguette (standard) and a nice pastry thing full of cherry jam. It was a proper mess to eat but amazing! From here they was a flurry of activity as the bridal party packed up and departed for the honeymoon apartment around the corner. There was lots of flustered girly packing and running around while the men did as they were told or just stood at the back of the patio and let the madness happen, staying well out the way. Eventually the whirlwind of skirts disappeared around the corner and the lads were left to relax.

We started drinking.

The rest of the night was devoted to chatting manly things, drinking and playing cards. We started with Wist and then I introduced them to All Declare, a variation of the same. It was a really good game between Malcolm, Button and Me. Each of us enjoy playing cards and wanted to win so the game was nicely matched with some friendly competition. In the end Malcom won 2 out of the 3 games we played, but only narrowly. I won 1 of the games.

And Button ended up in the pool…