Diary… Monday, Los Cristianos, Tenerife


◾At the top of the hill, on Ave Juan Carlos I is a bus stop where you can catch three free buses. 

One goes to Siam shopping mall, one goes to Siam water park and one goes to the go-carting track. They all depart at different times.

Having caught the 13.05 to Siam shopping mall, we arrived to realise we’d screwed up.

At Siam shopping mall

The mall was open but most of the shops were closed for the Three Kings bank holiday, so we jumped straight back on the first bus out of there.

◾On the journey back I read about the Three Kings, or Three Wise Men, or the Biblical Magi, who are said to have visited baby Jesus shortly after his birth with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. 

I tried to put myself in their shoes – or more probably sandals – and to think their thoughts. Inevitable questions sprang to mind.

Did all three witness the shining star at the same time and knew instantly, in unison, that their mission was to schlep hundreds of miles in search of a stable bearing an infant Lord Jesus and to lavish precious offerings of jewellery and perfume upon the boy child who would become a King?

I imagined them bickering about the best route to Bethlehem and whether scraggy old Camel 3 was really up to the job.

None of this gelled. It seemed unsatisfactory for such an important, epiphanous day, and all I was left with was cold hard facts.

◾The Wise Men’s names were Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar. And of the three, Caspar was clearly the looker.

◾Three Wise Men is the name of a cocktail made by mixing three different types of whisky – Johnnie Walker, Jack Daniel’s and Jim Beam.

◾The Three Wise Men are a row of underwater volcanoes in the Pacific Ocean. 

◾A memory from childhood in Liverpool:

On arrival back in Los Cristianos – a name that had put on significant weight during the 20-minute journey – I noticed that the Swedish church on the sea front was shut, closed, lights out, all gone home.

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