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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: 27 October 2020
27 October 2020 @ 13:53

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'*  

Living La Vida Loca in Galicia/Spain

It’s been my view for months now that the majority of people don’t realise just how difficult things are going to be - economy-wise - because of Covid. Or, perhaps more accurately, because of government reactions to Covid. As regards Spain, here’s a taster from The Corner, on the imminent rise in poverty. 

I've said more than once that the Spanish are not terribly considerate towards folk they don't know. Absent the vital 'personal factor'. Against this are the little acts of generosity I doubt would be seen in the UK,

Yesterday, for example, I asked the owner of a café I patronise about his coffee, as I quite liked it. Whereupon he gave me a kilo bag and said I could take it away and pay him for it later, if I liked it. Which I do. Likewise, the owner of my regular bar will add an order from me to her regular meat and fish orders to her suppliers. Of course, the personal factor is at work in these cases, as I’m an established customer.

Talking about Spanish society . . .  Not everyone will have seen the Comments to recent posts on the professions here. So, I’ll just say that I was surprised to read that not only your basic (high street) lawyer but also your basic doctor (the GP) have a much lower status (and income) here than in the UK. Despite the fact that, in the case of doctors at least, you need high marks in the Selectividad to get to study Medicine

And talking further of Spanish culture . . . 2 small examples:-

- At 11.23 last night my neighbour messaged me to say, if it wasn’t too late, I might like to come round and collect some of the biscuits she’d just baked. I got them at 6.45 this morning . . .

- Later this morning I went to a sort of municipal tip with a friend, having 2 old TVs to get rid of. She warned me they’d need to see my ID card, to prove I lived in the barrio of Poio. In the event, neither she nor I was asked to show a card. She was asked for a a number, which was written down with a pencil. What possible purpose could this serve? Other than to satisfy a national obsession with citing one’s ID number?

In the past week, I’ve twice crossed - on the infamous O Burgo bridge - with a burly chap in a kilt. I'm not at all convinced he's Scottish but am reluctantant to ask. Perhaps it's the ('Celtic') Galician version and he’s an aggressive Galician nationalist who might kill me if I laughed.

In the covered market this morning, there was a pile of brochures about said bridge. . . .

24 glossy pages, to go with the 8 (un-perused) information boards about it on the Lérez side of the bridge. Why? Glorification of the local council? More likely of the EU, which part-funded the expense of (pointless?) renovation. Other people’s money. So easily spent. Especially when you can’t be kicked out of office.

I mentioned our ugly-ish new museum and art gallery. I’m not 100% sure but I think this M has just appeared outside it. To rival the MacDonalds arch:-

The UK 

It beats the hell out of me . .  English bulldog puppies sell for thousands of pounds. After all, who on earth actually needs an astonishingly ugly dog bred to kill bulls, and which can't breathe properly?

The Way of the World

Not sure if this is parodic or not . . . greygender, intergender, maverique or astrogender (a fluid gender identity that transitions from male to female according to the configuration of the night sky)

Finally . . .

Tom Lehrer's famously clean dirty song. 


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

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