Put the donkey in the picture

In the days before Twitter and Facebook, in a more innocent world of do-it-yourself entertainment, there was a game called “pin the tail on the donkey.” I think the game involved a blindfold…

When I was in Ibiza earlier this month I took some photos of a particular farmhouse. It was on the route I used to walk or sometimes cycle from home to the beach in the early 1960s. Now it is surrounded by hotels in the pizza restaurant no-man’s-land between Figueretes and D’en Bossa, and has become a kind of empty monument to a life that once was. Like a Disney exhibit in an Ibiza theme park.

Preserved but deserted farm house near Punta de la Torre, between Figueretes and D'en Bossa beaches

Preserved but deserted farm house near Punta de la Torre, between Figueretes and D’en Bossa beaches

But it was real, once, with real people and real animals. Real smells. Real noises. That lost world of just fifty years ago is within reach. I have started to paint it.


In my last Tuesday morning art class for this summer I painted the “finca” from my photograph. What comes next is from memory. The Ibicenco people, the chickens, the farmyard buckets and baskets… and the donkey. There has to be a donkey. But where shall I put him? Blindfolded, and with a pin, I approach my painting.

Prayer for peace in Syria

God of Compassion,
Hear the cries of the people of Syria,
Bring healing to those suffering from the violence,
Bring comfort to those mourning the dead,
Strengthen Syria’s neighbours in their care and welcome for refugees,
Convert the hearts of those who have taken up arms,
And protect those committed to peace.

God of Hope,
Inspire leaders to choose peace over violence and to seek reconciliation with enemies,
Inspire the Church around the world with compassion for the people of Syria,
And give us hope for a future of peace built on justice for all.

We ask this through Jesus Christ,
Prince of Peace and Light of the World,




About Gareth Thomas

After a mixed career as an aircraft technician, London fringe theatre playwright, Franciscan friar, and secondary school teacher, I find myself dividing my time mostly between looking after the needs of four donkeys in a remote location in the mountains in the Costa Blanca and preparing a legal case against the corrupt management of my monstrous last employer - the Elians group - for unfair dismissal. I like to hear the wind in the pine trees. I do not like struggling to get a duvet into a duvet cover. My musical tastes are extinct and I have mostly given up cycle racing.
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3 Responses to Put the donkey in the picture

  1. Dilly says:

    Wherever you put the donkey – it must be trying to eat the vegetables, or biting its owner. What is the purpose of the concrete store at front left in the picture? For potatoes?

  2. Frere Rabit says:

    The object you are referring to (prolly you mean right not left?)is a typical Ibicenco water well. Potatoes do not come into it.

    PS Are you really Eccles or just another OTSOTA sockpuppet?

  3. Dilly says:


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