Craig Scott’s zany new blog is an exploration of the weird, wonderful and downright scary aspects of Spanish life. Follow Craig, as he encounters deadly animals, extreme sports, and everyday freaks and eccentrics. From paragliders to porn stars, there are some crazy folk in Andalucia, and the ‘Mad Dog’ intends to meet them all!
LAST year… I nearly croaked! What should have been a routine op went belly-up when a sleep-deprived surgeon got sloppy with his scalpel. At the inquest, I discovered that the human body is a gooey bag of fluids, and if one of those bags get pierced, and liquids mix, you may as well call the undertaker!
By the way, apologies to anyone due to undergo minor surgery. I’m sure your operating table won’t resemble a scene from Aliens when Spanish docs do their business. Indeed, I read recently that Spain has the seventh best healthcare in the world, and a life expectency which exceeds 80 years.
No, if you want my advice, just don’t get ill in Nottingham. Seriously… my life was placed in the hands of clueless, camp “man-nurse”, who believed scoffing strawberry bon-bons and watching Strictly Come Dancing took precedence over internal bleeding.
Anyway, post-op, I was forced to spend months in bed recovering. In between dressing bed sores and peering out of the window like that crippled kid in The Secret Garden, I found myself doing a lot of soul-searching. Despite having a good job and detached bungelow on a leafy cul-de-sac, I felt crappier than Amy Childs at a Mensa meeting.
Unlike most Brits, I don’t measure my happiness based on status, wealth or material goods. Nope… forget iPhones, Barratt Homes and Audi X5s, i’d rather feel the clunk of a pony tail bouncing off my collar, as a ride a wild stallion through a dusty wilderness. You see, i’m not motivated by bulging bank balances, one-upmanship and brunches in pretentious gastro-pubs. I remember sitting in meetings and daydreaming about sipping sangria at a balmy, beach bar. I dreamt about living in a classless society where blue-collar factory workers could share tapas with filthy-rich property tycoons. Most importantly, however, I longed for freedom and liberation.
In England, you’re guaranteed to be called a “flash git” or “ponce” if you gel your hair, sport a tan, or flash a bit of chest hair. However, in Spain, I adore the way flair, individuality and flamboyance are encouraged and celebrated. Where else in Europe could men get away with wearing hot pants and pink jeans? Whilst repressed Brits worry about our public perception, these guys are rowing in public, sleeping on park benches, blasting their car horns and frolicking naked in the surf. To summarise, they don’t give a toss, and I love that about them.
But I knew moving to Spain wouldn’t be easy. I read recently that most people die within 12 miles of where they were born… which for me, would probably a graffiti-covered grave in Oldham! I can just imagine some chav on community service fishing the fag-ends and crisp packets out of my decaying daffodils. No thanks. Therefore, as soon as I was back on my feet, I quit my job, flogged the house and headed off for a new life in sunny Spain.
Anyway, introduction’s over. After my recent brush with death (not that I’m a drama queen or anything..), I’ve decided to grab the bull by the horns and live everyday as if it’s my last. There’s a lot of strange things to explore in this fine country, and I intend to investigate them all. My new motto is… “try everything once except incest and Morris Dancing” – but I’m definitely up for a spot of flamenco.
So, if you want to see how I fare against Andalucian funnel-web spiders, gypsy curses and highway pirates (to name but a few), keep your eyes peeled for my new blog – ‘Mad Dogs an Englishmen’ – exclusively on The Olive Press website.