suntower1jpegNo..Not that sort of quarry….


I should explain……

You remember my knackering, sun-blistered walk some days ago to check out the tower?

Of course you do.

Well because of my love for you Dear Reader, I decided to deliver on my promise and head back at a more auspicious time….Sun getting low, shadows lengthening, cooling light..You know the sort of thing….

Rather than a two hour trudge over slippery, slidey, sea-beddy styley, sandy dunes, I waited til the sun was on the wane before putting on my most adventurous outfit, (camo pedal pushers and an off the shoulder utility smock),  firing up the SHPics diesel charabanc, and hitting the dirt tracks,  subsequently managing to find a 45 degree parking space on the side of a hill within a scant half mile of my destination…No meters, no yellow lines…Result.

Crucially, I chose to ignore the small sign that read “Coto privado de caza”…. Partly because I am a devil-may-care, free-spirited adventure seeker and always ignore signs, but also because my very little Spanish had me convinced that it was something to do with ‘edges, private, and house’ and other such mundane inconsequentials…In retrospect, this was a mistake.

BUT…The light really was rather good, and, after a fast lollop over the separating terrain, I was soon clicking away happily…..leaping this way and that, shutter shuttering, giving the f-stops a right old work out…..into the light..away from the light…..uppards…….downerds…..sideways…….Oh the fun I was having!

So much fun I gave very little thought to a few rather loud bangs occasionally echoing over the hills……Definitely my second mistake.
It wasn’t until I looked up from the viewfinder  to find myself  firstly staring into the cold, squinty eyes of two grim faced desperados, then secondly at the oiled barrels of two un-broken shot-guns glinting in the dying light of the sun, and then finally, the various steaming, blood-spattered animal corpses hanging around their necks, that I had the first inkling that something might be somewhat amiss.

I tried a friendly “Hola”……………..Nothing!

I went for a more formal and very polite…..”Buenos tardes signors”…………Nothing!

Nothing ventured, nothing gained……….”Hey dudes, que pasa?”……………………….Still nothing!…Well maybe the eyes got a bit squintier…….Maybe the barrels lifted a fraction……

At times like this you have to take the bull by the horns and go for broke……

So..I waved the camera, took a deep breath, and played the photographers ‘get out of jail’ card…… “National Geographic!”


No I’m wrong!!!!

The barrels definitely did lift a fraction!…………………………..


suntower2jpegSubsequent research informs me that “Coto privado de caza” refers to private hunting grounds……

I found this out from a sniggering Mrs Shpics some 30 minutes after my accelerated departure from the tower….By then, I’d tweezered out most of the sticky bits of rock and shale that had been clinging to my grazed knees,(did you know you can crawl almost as fast as you can run?), I’d swopped my underwear, (won’t be wearing those again), and my whimpering, if not completely stopped, was at least under control.

Anyway………..Enjoy the photos! Click’em, they look better..It’s the least you can do!


All Images Copyright Stuart Allan Hyde

    1. Stuart Hyde - shpics

      I must have seen a different version…In the one I saw Clint didn’t beg and scarper….
      (But I must admit, even in abject surrender, I did look quite dashing and handsome…..)

      And..(I swear you are a latter day mystic)..on the subject of “The Good, The Bad,and the Ugly”, I will, by the purest coincidence, have a treat for you later….Watch this space!


      1. Stuart Hyde - shpics

        Aha! A prior day mystic as well….
        You have mysticism well and truly covered!

        However, a test is in order before I found a cult in your name……..
        Where will I be tomorrow, what comedy under-garment will I be wearing and what tune will I be whistling?

      2. scillagrace

        Hmmmm….you will be at El Playazo beach wearing a Union Jack Speedo and whistling “The Colonel Bogey March” (you know, the one the POWs whistle in The Bridge on the River Kwai). Close?

      3. Stuart Hyde - shpics

        Well all I can say is thanks very much indeed!!!!
        Now I have to replace virtually the whole of my undies drawer based on a mere hint ………
        And what if you’re wrong?
        What if it’s like Samson losing his hair?
        What if I am in some way lessened by Speedo-lack?
        I’m REALLY worried!

      4. Stuart Hyde - shpics

        I’ll have you know she still gets into a bit of a lather at the sight of me in my budgie-smugglers………
        Hence my worry…….
        Maybe arm-pit knickers will kill the attraction and she’ll forsake me for a younger model?
        I just don’t know what to do for the best…..Should I continue to sin against taste or should I risk my marriage?
        ‘To speedo or not to speedo, that is the question…?’

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