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Maria Amélia, 95, is world's oldest blogger

By ERIC SHACKLE, in Sydney, Australia

Maria AmeliaNinety five year old Maria Amélia
with her two dogs. Click on
this photo to see her
story told in Spanish.

Señora Maria Amélia , a 95-year-old Spanish grandmother, has dethroned Sweden's Allan Lööf (94) as the world's oldest blogger. A TV crew from Madrid travelled about 350km (210 miles) to Galicia to interview her, and Spanish newspapers hailed her victory with extensive stories and photos.

Her blog, given to her by her "stingy" grandson as a birthday present, has a big following in Spanish-speaking countries, including South America, and in the Netherlands, where a Dutch translation is posted. In a single month the blog chalked up 51,000 hits.

Maria Amélia dictates her stories, in which she discusses current politics, her daily life, and memories of past events, to her grandson, who converts them into a blog.

She discovered the Internet a year ago. "I think it's great that you can find everything there," she said. "You can read the news and about people's lives. It's the best discovery that I've made in my life.

"It all surprises me. It seems like a dream, like witchcraft. If my grandparents arose they would hallucinate (when they first listened to a gramophone, they though there was someone inside it)."

In less than a week's blogging, she recalled the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in 1936, the "black tide" of fuel oil from the tanker Prestige which broke in two and sank off Galicia's Death Coast in 2002, bulls in A Coruña (formerly La Coruña) and old-time gallantry.

Maria Amélia clearly enjoys her sudden fame, but takes even greater delight in revealing in her blog that she is about to become a great-grandmother.

It's all written in Spanish. Google's automatic translator makes a poor job of converting it into these sadly garbled words:

Relatives and friends of the Internet, today I had the news of gladdest than podeis to give idea you. Today fuí to eat with my other grandson and his woman. As it would be my surprise that notifies great to me that I am going to be great-grandmother, pasmaros… GREAT-GRANDMOTHER. To the 95 years great-grandmother.

I do not know if I will arrive these months because I am already very old, but for me something as close is a joy as it is a biznieto. I am encantandísima.

I am contentísima and that God gives health me to be able to know it and to enjoy him just a little bit. This is huge.

Congratulations to the Mother and the Papa.

We too are encantandísima, Maria. Congratulations to you and your family ... and condolences to Allan Lööf, who now becomes the world's second-oldest blogger. He's still the oldest in Northern Europe!

Google translation of Maria's blog - January 9, 2007

Today it was a day that, really, I had many visits of the radio. That in the morning. And in the evening, I was with the television Sixth of Madrid, and with one of Internet of Santiago of the Socialist Party. It wanted to name it, but I do not decide to me.

And I was left a little tired. Because to my years… for here, for they took to me there. And a wind that did not let to me nor walk. And we behind schedule passed a very good one but with a very bad time.

And they made me laugh much and it tells the ugly thing me that I am in the television. I leave very old. I am already very old, but still they are seen me there plus the wrinkles. And I said to him: “ Man, to see if disimulais a little these wrinkles”. Because they taught a little to me what they are going to publish, after gathering.

Because to my they do interviews to me and without saying in advance to me what they are going to ask to me. Clear that they are things that leave to me at the moment and it has more grace to them than a woman of my age continues answering as I answer. I do not know if I will answer or or badly. They say very well that.

And to thank to him to come to visit to me. And they passed it well, who ate a good lupandita of seafood. Because we were in a bar and there they put themselves, we go, like pepes. They paid to it eh that I do not pay to it.

And that takes advantage of to them. They went contentísimos of this Galicia that eats admirably. Having euros one goes formidable. The worse thing is the one who does not have them, that cannot eat as much good things.

And thus it is the life. Who me it was going it to say that there was to come a television from Madrid to chat with me.

An edited version of this story has been published by the citizen reporters' journal OhmyNewsInternational.

Story first posted February 2007

Copyright © 2007

Eric Shackle

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