Volume 75

Cristina Sanchez
1Casa News from Spain - No. 94
A Topical Digest of News and Views from the Andalucia Area in Spain
Cristina Sanchez 
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Calle Cantarranas 1, Álora 29500, Málaga, SPAIN 
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Next Thursday, 7 September, there will be an equestrian spectacular performed by the 'Centro de Equitacion de la Cartuja'.  Tickets will be on sale from Monday 4 September, in the Centro de Informacion Juvenil from 8.30 am until 2.00 pm and on the day from the ticket office.  Price 5 Euros. The ‘Fantasia Ecuestre' begins at 9.00 pm at the Campo de Futbol, Alora.
Cartama Iron Bridge
The works to illuminate the iron bridge over the river Guadalhorce by Cartama Estacion have started and are expected to be finished by the middle of September.  The project will include the installation of 15 lamps, channelling and electrical equipment.  The budget for the work is 29,810 Euros.
The XXVIII Festival of Flamenco Singing of Ardales inaugurated the local feria last Thursday, 31 August which will continue until Sunday 3 September.  Today, Saturday 2 September, from 11.00 am, the traditional contest of the mantilla take place and at 5.00 pm there will be a 'pasacalles' (music and dancing) wearing suits of flamena with gifts for the best dressed.  Sunday night there will be a supper at the municipal building to celebrate all the young people who have become 18 in 2006 followed by a performance by Koala.
Bathers Rescued from Malaga Beach
Seven adults and two children aged nine and ten who ignored the red flags flying on Friday had to be rescued by Lifeguards from the Misericordia beach.  The strong wind from the west had produced high waves.  All rescued were pronounced safe and well after their ordeal.
Malaga's Slow Drivers Fined
The Trafico Civil Guard in Malaga has revealed that driving too slow is now the fourth most common fine they issue.   The offence is usually committed by new or learner drivers, and follows the more common fines for not wearing a seatbelt, being over the alcohol limit or using a mobile phone.  During the two months since the new points driving licence came into effect, drivers in Malaga province have lost at least 200 points a day.
On the Costa del Sol there has not been the reduction in the number of deaths on the roads as seen nationally, but there has been a reduction in the number of accidents.
Nerja Sand For Sale on Internet
An Italian ecological organisation has warned that sand from the beach at Nerja is being sold on a German website from just 1.99 Euros a bag.  The sand is being sold as a holiday souvenir.  The Nerja councillor responsible for the beaches said that it was ‘surprising and very strange and odd that only Nerja had been chosen from the entire Costa del Sol’.  The Italian ecologists have called for the police to intervene and close the website down.
Alhambra Lions to be Restored
The lions in the famous Patio de Los Leones in the Alhambra in Granada are to be removed for restoration in October.  The Alhambra and Generalife management say the 11 lions around the fountain will be removed for at least two years and that the work has a budget of 600,000 Euros.  The patio will remain open to the public despite the lions’ absence.
Rare Birds Set Free
The three lammergeyer birds released from captivity in the Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas Natural Park in Jaen in May have spent their first 100 days in the wild.  One was seen over 100 kms from the cave they were released from.
Spain Considers Toll System for Motorists in Cities
Spain's PSOE government is considering the introduction of a congestion charge in the country's main cities as a way to reduce pollution and traffic. The draft document will be debated at the party's conference later this month.  London introduced a congestion charge for driving into the city centre in 2003.
Blair to Visit Spain
Tony Blair will visit Madrid at the start of October for talks with President Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.  The two leaders are expected to discuss the peace process that started when ETA declared a ceasefire towards the end of March this year.  The visit was arranged during an EU summit in Vienna last May, when Mr Zapatero indicated that the meeting would be a good opportunity for Mr Blair to express his view on the Basque peace process given his experience in Northern Ireland.
Spain Goes Back to Work
After the August holidays in Spain, it's back to work on Monday for many Spaniards and, according to a report, one in three will suffer depression in the next few days as a result.  Stress and irritability will be the main symptoms of a psychological disorder which is known as post-holiday syndrome.  The syndrome often affects women, but anyone aged between 25-40 is susceptible.  In most cases, the symptoms should pass within a week.
Foreigners Purchased One in Every Eight Homes Sold in Spain this Year
According to figures published last week, foreigners bought one in eight homes sold in the first three months of this year.  The housing ministry report highlighted the impact which immigrants and foreigners are having on the domestic market.  Between January and March, 233,699 homes changed hands in Spain, of these homes 31,342 were bought by foreigners.  Andalucia was the third most popular area with 4,028 sales.  Foreign buyers, particularly those from Britain and Germany, have been a major driving force in the Spanish property market in recent years.
Spain Still a Favourite for Tourists
Spain is still one of the preferred tourist destinations despite the growing international competition.  According to the Institute of Tourism Studies, a record breaking 33.2 million foreigners visited between January and July which is 5.3% more than during the same period last year and the second largest increase in the last seven years. Andalucia received 14.4% of the visitors to Spain.  The British, Germans and French continued to come in large numbers, however in contrast tourist spending has continued to drop as more people choose to stay in second or rented homes rather than in hotels.
British Airways and Iberia in Spain-Gibraltar Airport Deal
British Airways and Iberia airlines are expected to agree a Spain-Gibraltar airport deal according to industry circles. The British Airways flights will be operated by their franchise partner GB Airways and the Iberia flights by their own franchise partners Air Nostrum. 
Hercules 0 - Malaga 1
Malaga has started the new season with a win away to Hercules.  Their first home game of the season this weekend is against Alaves.  Kick off is at 8.00 pm.
Spain Reaches Basketball World Cup Final
Jose Calderon delivers, giving Spain one of its biggest basketball victories.  Argentina and Spain were level at 74 each in Japan, with 19 seconds to go, Calderon took a deep breath and made the basket!  Argentina's Andres Nocioni missed a three at the other end and time expired.  Calderon jumped on top of publicity boards, his fists in the air, his teammates rolled on the floor in front of an electrified 17,000 spectators, his wife of three years, Anna, cried.  "Today was not my best game," said Calderon. He had seven points, two assists, and two turnovers in 22 minutes. "But it's a historic win. It's our best tournament in our lives. I'm happy for my team, and for Spain."  They face Greece in the final on Sunday.
Tennis US Open
Four Spaniards are through to third round of the US Open in New York.  Rafael Nadal, Tommy Robredo, David Ferrer and Fernando Verdasco have all progressed.  Men's No. 2 seed Nadal will play South Africa's Wesley Moodie today, Saturday 2 September.
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