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Welcome to Las Vegas, Nevada- the Gambling Capital of US and the City that never sleeps! So, what has this city have to do with this site. The answer is none. I just love the photo, I took during our vacation to this city a couple of years ago. In this site, you will find articles from my autobiography, global warming, senior citizens issues, tourism, politics in PI, music appreciation and articles about our current experiences as retirees enjoying the "snow bird" lifestyle between US and the Philippines. Your comments will be highly appreciated. Please do not forget to read the latest national and international news. Some of the photos and videos on this site, I do not own. However, I have no intention on infringement of your copyrights. Cheers!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Earthquake in the Philippines and the Balearic Islands



When I woke up this morning, the first thing I saw while checking my FaceBook page was a short message from a friend asking me if my family is ok. I told him my family is still in US and my relatives in the Philippines are in another island not directly affected by the earthquake.

In case you have not heard , a 7.6 to 7.9 intensity quake hit the Eastern part of Mindanao yesterday. Several homes were destroyed and one child was killed as of this writing date. I am sure more damage will be be reported in the next couple of days.

So what is the connection of this earthquake in Eastern Mindanao to Balearic Islands in Spain? :Let me explain. My Facebook friend who inquired about my family is from Menorca in the Balearic Island, Spain. Evidently, he was also reading the news at the same time I was surfing my FaceBook page. We were able to chat for about 10 minutes. I learned he owns two hotels in Menorca with 100 beds. I also learned that the tourism business in Menorca has not been affected by the poor economic conditions in Europe. As a matter of fact tourism is up 15% this year. Most of the tourist comes from Northern Europe. Menorca is only about 40 minutes plane ride from Barcelona and one hour from Madrid.

This conversation aroused my interest about the Balearic Island and specifically Menorca,(also spelled as Minorca) where the two hotels of my friend are located. He has two websites, Calabona.net and Marblava.com in case you are interested in vacationing to Menorca, Balearic Islands, Spain. Here's a short summary in the net about the Balearic Islands for your information.

The Balearic Islands are an archipelago of Spain in the western Mediterranean Sea, near the eastern coast of the Iberian Peninsula. The four largest islands are: Majorca, Minorca, Ibiza and Formentera. The archipelago forms an autonomous community and a province of Spain, with Palma as the capital city. The co-official languages in the Balearic Islands are Catalan and Castilian Spanish. The current Statute of Autonomy declares the Balearic Islands as one nationality of Spain.

The island of Minorca was a British dependency for most of the 18th century as a result of the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht. This treaty—signed by the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Portugal as well as the Kingdom of Spain, to end the conflict caused by the War of the Spanish Succession--gave Gibraltar and Minorca to the Kingdom of Great Britain, Sardinia to Austria (both territories had been part of the Crown of Aragon for more than four centuries), and Sicily to the House of Savoy. In addition, Flanders and other European territories of the Spanish Crown were given to Austria. The island fell to French forces, under Armand de Vignerot du Plessis in June 1756 and was occupied by them for the duration of the Seven Years' War. The British re-occupied the island after the war but, with their military forces diverted away by the American War of Independence, it fell to a Franco-Spanish force after a seven-month siege (1781/2). Spain retained it under the Treaty of Paris in 1783. However during the French Revolutionary Wars, when Spain became an ally of France, it came under French rule.

Minorca was finally returned to Spain by the Treaty of Amiens during the French Revolutionary Wars, following the last British occupation, which lasted from 1798 to 1802. The continued presence of British naval forces, however, meant that the Balaerics were never occupied by the French during the Napoleonic Wars. The main islands of the autonomous are Majorca (Mallorca), Minorca (Menorca), Ibiza (Eivissa) and Formentera, all of which are popular tourist destinations. Among the minor islands is Cabrera, which is the location of the Parc Nacional de l'Arxipèlag de Cabrera.

The history of these islands is indeed very fascinating. Today, I am glad my Facebook friend chatted with me this morning. It gave me an inspiration to read more information about this tourist spots in Europe. Please note that my family and I had spent one week of vacation in Southern Spain ( Costa del Sol, Marbella, Malaga and the Rock of Gibraltar) about 10 years ago. Please visit my friend's websites at calabona.net or at marblava.com if you get a chance.

I hope yesterday's earthquake in the Philippines did not cause a lot of damage and loss of lives.

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