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Thoughts from Pontevedra, Galicia, Spain

Random thoughts from a Brit in the North West. Sometimes serious, sometimes not. Quite often curmudgeonly.

Thoughts from Pontevedra, Galicia, Spain:3 September 2020
03 September 2020 @ 10:31

Night’s candles are burnt out, and jocund day stands tiptoe on the misty mountain tops.

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable.  

- Christopher Howse: 'A Pilgrim in Spain'*  

Covid 19

Sweden: The scientist in charge of Sweden’s coronavirus strategy has suggested that the over-70s could be able to spend Christmas with their friends or families as the country prepares to relax its guidelines for vulnerable groups.

The UK: More confusion . . . Tests for antibodies may be dramatically underestimating the proportion of people who have been infected with the coronavirus. The claim, made in The British Medical Journal, implies that it is possible some parts of the UK are far closer to herd immunity than had been thought. However, the authors cautioned that they could not put a figure on how far out the estimates were. According to seroprevalence studies, only 5% of people in the UK and 17% in London have been infected. Three researchers have said that there are inherent flaws in the way those figures are calculated, which may prove to be crucial, particularly when it comes to detecting mild cases. They may also explain, they said, why some regions seemed to be avoiding a second wave despite the relaxation of lockdown.

Spain: Radar Covid is a free app which uses Bluetooth, anonymously, to inform users if you’ve spent at least 15 minutes within 2m of a person who's tested positive for coronavirus in the previous 14 days. The Spanish PM has called on all citizens to download it, stressing it could reduce the impact of the pandemic by 30%. 

Portugal: To be re-red-listed after only 2 weeks on the green list, catching out many Brits who quickly booked a holiday there. And infuriating many (all?) of them. IGIMSTS.

Living La Vida Loca in Spain and Galicia

Spain’s economy was thumped by an 80% fall in tourism receipts in July. Nationwide that is. The Galician economy - thanks to domestic tourists - wasn’t hit anywhere near so badly.

The Spanish judicial system is not exactly famed for expeditiousness. And you can imagine what Covid has done to it. Shades of Jarndyce v Jarndyce - Dickens' famous example of the futility and length of civil court cases. 

At last, the greedy Franco heirs have been ordered to give up the mansion here that was ‘gifted’ to Franco by the Galician people back in the 1940s, largely without their knowling they'd been so generous.

Yesterday I received edition number 1529 of Private Eye. Fine but I wonder what happened to editions number 1528 and 1527? Will I eventually get them or have they fallen into The Pit of August?

María's Dystopian Times, Days 19 and 20.      

The UK

From the  Private Eye just received:-


At the Republican National Convention, Trump’s message was crystal clear. Trump argued that only he could stop the racial unrest that he himself has incited. Trump claimed that only he can rebuild the economy that his negligence helped destroy. Trump alleged that only he can navigate America out of the coronavirus pandemic that he failed to contain. In other words, Trump is telling voters to re-elect him to save them from his own failures. It could well work.


Astute readers will've noticed we've reached the end of the alphabet in respect of well-known refrains. So, turning now to those less well-known, back to A . . . So. three more refranes:-  

-  A constant guest is never welcome: A donde te quieren mucho, no vengas a menudo/Lo poco agrada y lo mucho enfada/Visita cada día, a la semana hastía.

- A creaking door lasts longest: El viejo qui se cura, cien años dura.

- A few germs never hurt anyone: Chancho(cerdo) limpio nunca engorda.

Finally . . .  

I didn't know there were this many breeds of cow in the entire world so I was surprised to read there were at least 16 in Galicia alone:-    


* A terrible book, by the way. Don't be tempted to buy it, unless you're a very religious Protestant.

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