There was a time when most people looked forward to the Easter holidays because it meant four days away from the factory or office. A time for worshipping for many, special sermons and favourite hymns. A time for family gatherings, for treating children. Not this year though. Not 2020. The majority of members are of an age where work is but a distant memory, where every day is now a holiday. The deadly coronavirus, already responsible for thousands of deaths world wide, also “killed” Easter. No church goings. No family lunches. No social events. No sport. At least not for the law abiding. Amazingly quite a number have chosen not to be guided, not to stay at home, not to keep a distance from others. One hopes they don’t have to pay a price for their non compliance. Just this morning comes news that Prosegur have had to persuade players to leave the driving range and one of our courses. How thoughtless can man be?

It was Aristotle who once said “The world was made only of earth, air, fire and water.” That was long before Covid-19 came along. On which distressing subject our Captaincy Team have words to add.


With no action on which to comment we could have made out a case for not producing a newsletter this month. However, our appearance record is unbroken thus far so the challenge is accepted, the emphasis being on the past with help from a goodly number of pictures.

Judi Lentelink first started working her camera here in 2000, the year she and Louis bought into Las Terrazas off-plan. Since moved, of course. She has dug out three photographs which fit our current criteria.

The first shows the intended layout of Europa, taken from the 11th tee of Asia in 2001.
The second covers the MacErliains prizegiving in 2002.
Third up shows two panoramic shots of the 18th of America taken from her then bedroom balcony and before the building of houses now owned by the Hilliards, Gilchrists and Halls.

The avalanche of old photographs has been divided up. This month we stay on the subject of courses in their infancy. Next month, when there is likely to be little of a golfing nature on which to report, we will turn to people, highlighting the social side of our members!

Meanwhile you are invited to click on the link below but, please, make allowances for memory lapses and speculative captions!


A jolly group shot came our way starring former Captain Ron Chesterton centre stage and looking happy. As well he might because it transpires the picture was taken on his 70th birthday when “There was much wine consumed and I have to admit I had a bit too much.” A state shared with others it is separately reported.

To further quote from his recent missive:

“So, what to do during this lock down. Blenheim has put us on furlough until the end of June as the palace is of course closed completely. We can still walk in the extensive grounds which are very beautiful in the Spring. We have had dry sunny weather this last two weeks but with a chilly wind. This weekend the temperatures are due to rise to 19 C which will be welcome.

I have embarked on a project to improve my cooking skills and have managed an apple and rhubarb crumble (success) , chicken, leek and mushroom pie (success) and today a coffee and walnut cake (failure but I blame the recipe from Nigel Slater). I have also done some interior decorating which was overdue. Jenny is keeping up with her reading and gently supervising my attempts at cooking so that’s great.

We met with David and Hazel Gilchrist just before the lockdown and enjoyed a meal in Marlborough at Rick Stein’s. Sadly they had to cancel a very nice planned holiday to Russia.”

Following the appearance of our baby Kestrel in last month’s issue came a photo as if by way of explanation. We would never have thought Michael Kruppa to be a ‘twicher’?


If you do have to venture forth and are stopped by the police, remember to shut off your engine and put your mouth into neutral.


It has not escaped notice that this word has become more popular of late, especially on the nightly Matt Hancock Show, struggling somewhat without Boris Johnson. Not long ago the in word was “absolutely”, used as either a “yes” or a “no”. Now answers are increasingly prefaced by a “So” followed by a short pause. “On going”, “unprecedented”, “incredibly”, “critically” and “ramped up” also appear at frequent intervals. One could run a book on who uses them the most. How about that Merv?


March and April were to have been busy months for our various teams. Then there was the first Cabell Robinson Cup to be played over two days starting tomorrow 14/4. A lot of administrative work ahead for all the leaders seems inevitable. Even when the lockdown is lifted one doubts very much whether there will be a mad rush to catch up. Those more cautious will be wanting to see the death rate stats proving that all is well to “socialise” again.


We covered Erling’s wedding to Marta last month but illustrated only by “amateur” pictures. Since then the work of the professionals has come to hand so we invited the happy couple to pick a handful for us.


This little piece will be a test for our younger members probably, and a real challenge for those not of English origin. The only point of the subject is to show that what is being done now is not entirely new. There have been previous plagues.

“In 1630 the Lord Mayor of London addressed one of the Livery Companies thus:


There has been a helpful response to our request for stories and pictures of days gone by. One ‘supplier’ who shall be nameless sent about 70 photos going right back to the days of Mathew, Mark, Luke and John it would seem at first glance. One balks mentally at the sorting task ahead but full marks for enthusiasm?

Meanwhile comes a friendly update from David and Hazel Gilchrist, accompanied by easy to read pictures.

“In truth life is not so different back in the UK although we can leave home for exercise every day and there are far fewer police to enforce restrictions here than in Spain. The vast majority of the people in the UK of course behave in accordance with the guidelines whilst a few choose to flout them, possibly to attract attention or ‘publicity’ in this media dominated age. We are fortunate to have several large areas of common in walking distance from home and can enjoy quite substantial walks seeing only the occasional soul at which point all concerned veer apart to ensure the 2 club (metre) length rule is strictly obeyed. Yours truly can be seen social distancing below!

Given the situation both here and in Spain it looks likely that none of us will be travelling anywhere for quite some time to come. In our case we will experience a UK spring for the first time in almost 20 years, a small compensation for missing a season at La Cala and all that it entails. More important however is to keep hearing news of friends and colleagues staying positive and more important staying safe and healthy. You too of course Jack, your newsletter will never have been read from start to finish so avidly as in these times so stay well and keep scribbling”.

Thanks David!

David’s photos show Calle del Lago taken in 2003/4 where, for a time, he and Hazell looked to be in splendid isolation (!!). Only La Plaza, Los Altos, Terrazas, Colinas and the C1 villas preceded their new home.


Take twice as long to eat half as much.


It was the year of James Reid and Suzanne Valentin’s captaincies. In those days the newsletter was a glossy affair, put together in house, not by members, and distributed to all and sundry. An up-market freebie stocked in the bar and pro shop. Help yourself. Then, following a run of 34 editions, the "La Cala Resort Newsletter”, to give it its full title, died. The last captains to front the cover, in the summer of 2011, were Paul Massey and Sonya Foster.

The appearance of the publication was irregular and usually coincident with a new property development, or an important competition being held, an anniversary or the launch of Campo Europa.

After a pause came “The Mulligan” for which a young Irishman, Dion Breen was responsible, operating out of a portakabin in the car park. A good player himself he wrote the text, took the pictures, and probably delivered copies to the usual collection points. Glossy copies they were not. It was a modest publication in terms of paper quality, but a popular production. Then Dion became seriously ill, left, and “The Mulligan” disappeared.

For a while there was a silence but then, in 2012/13 emails began to circulate, mostly featuring Ron Chesteron and David Gilchrist and dealing with serious issues of which, in their view, members should be aware. In 2013/14 Alan Jewett became Captain, took over the responsibility of member communication, a favoured theme being Rules, and produced his thoughts on a monthly basis. After which came Yours truly, the Scribbler.

For those who might be interested in this glimpse of yesterday we enclose one of the bi-annual editions. Just click on the link below. It is quite a long read but you may like to just dip in and out.


Right first time. Our very own Rain Goddess with her upscale mask. Never backward at coming forward the Hilliards have a nice tale to tell this month. It involved a carton delivered anonymously and left at their gate. Changing into her full lockdown attire Pauline retrieved the package and found it to contain these colourful cakes which, in no time at all ceased to exist, at least in their original state. In due course the two ladies responsible for this kindly Easter thought were identified and thanked. Well done Tracey and Tess Ledgard.

Just as well Pauline was so brave or the cakes would have been welcomed by this hungry mother and colourful children.


One thing on the credit side of being isolated is the extra time we all have. Time in which to do different things or those you usually push to one side for another day. Lilian can no longer enjoy television because she can only hear and not see it unless her nose is touching the screen! Instead we have rediscovered music and are making our way through a substantial collection of rarely touched CD’s. My own change of direction has involved books. A switch to those of a large size or daunting subject. “A Brief history of Time” by Stephen Hawking comes into the latter category, for me anyway, Only 260 pages but with small print and mind stretching content. One cannot honestly claim to have read every word, or understood everything, but it was interesting, educational, and one can now better appreciate why John Crombie finds the universe such a fascinating topic of conversation.

In contrast to the lightweight paperback my next target was a 468 page hard back. It was given to me as a birthday present on the 13th September 1999 at a time when we, the company, were considering the purchase of a powerful IBM computer. A younger colleague was spearheading the argument in favour of the investment and obviously felt this book would impress and influence my decision. Unfortunately other pressures got in the way, the book never got read, and it has sat patiently on the shelf for the past 30 years, waiting for me to be isolated and without excuses. “Father Son & Co. My life at IBM and beyond” by Thomas J. Watson Jnr. In conjunction with Peter Petre proved to be, for me, a “must keep reading” story of entrepreneurism. Hard work, dedication, autocracy, and enormous success. First by Thomas Snr., and then his son. The former born into a humble family, the latter into wealth, private education, a grand home, but initially inclined more towards being a playboy than succeeding his father. The size of the IBM company became unbelievable, the decision making formidable, the care for and treatment of all employees exceptional. The retirement life of Jnr., was enviable with skiing, sailing competitively, flying his own jet, and at one stage being Ambassador to Russia.

If we had a male bookclub (Why don’t we? The Ladies do.) it would be hard to recommend Stephen Hawking but not the amazing IBM story.


Unbeknown to the Scribbler it appears that our very popular Academy professional, Murdo McCorquodale, is a singer of some note. No pun intended. My attention was drawn to YouTube which, being honest, is relatively new territory to me. There, via a few of the links provided, I have been able to see and hear Murdo in action, and very pleasant it was too. If you aspire to being a member of his growing fan club just go to MURDO 2772 YouTube, sip a glass or two, and relax.

Murdo to the right. Rumours of Flavio and he becoming a dulcet duo are denied.


“When I realised that children (and us adults) had been in quarantine for 40 days it struck a cord with me.. so I researched very briefly on the internet the meaning of 40 days...

Mentioned 146 times in Scripture, the number 40 generally symbolizes a period of testing, trial or probation. During Moses' life he lived forty years in Egypt and forty years in the desert before God selected him to lead his people out of slavery.

In religion, 40 seems to be shorthand for “a long time.” Jesus spent 40 days fasting in the wilderness being tempted by the devil; the great flood lasted 40 days and 40 nights; the Jewish people wandered the desert for 40 years.

Negative forty is the unique temperature at which the Fahrenheit and Celsius scales correspond; that is, −40 °F = −40 °C. It is referred to as either "minus forty" or "forty below".

Forty is also:

• in the saying "Life begins at forty"

• in the expression "forty winks", meaning a short sleep

• the number of years of marriage celebrated by the ruby wedding anniversary

and most interestingly

Quarantine, the practice of isolation to prevent the spread of epidemic disease, derives from a Venetian dialect of the Italian 'quaranta giorni' meaning 'forty days', the period that ships were required to be isolated before passengers and crew could go ashore during the Black Death. !!!

Here is the link to the page as one of the other many links to the number 40 might catch your eye.! “

(ED. Thanks Loraine, but enough for now! )


After the comparatively serious stuff it is a very pleasant surprise to be able to insert, at the last minute and already behind social media, a sllde show featuring very familiar faces, but in different habitats. Well done our team, friends all. Great idea, Sean. Lightens the load.


If anyone knows this gentleman please point him in this direction. He is a “news gatherer” and could be of assistance next month!


As we all try to cope with these extraordinary circumstances it is perhaps appropriate to finish this month on an optimistic note, as struck by a young South African boy with a loveable presentation.

… Someone said to “Sing in the midst of tribulation” but when and who it was is not known. Sounds Biblical?