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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: 5 January 2021
05 January 2021 @ 12:49

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

In every county where there's been a crisis, panic and and lockdowns, it's been about a fear that healthcare resources would be overwhelmed. Essentially because pandemic plans weren't followed at the outset and responses were too slow. Infections now seem to be rising in all such countries. Even the good news that the mortality rate has been reduced has its bad side. Fewer deaths means hospital beds being occupied longer, bringing a collapse ever closer.

Spain is no exception to the problem of rising infections, with the Xmas-New Year surge yet to come. Galicia and Navarra are said to be exceptions to this but for how long? Here in Pontevedra, bars are supposed to close at 5pm but at least some of them weren't at 6 last night. God knows how they can get away with it. Perhaps because the police seem to be concentrating on preventing inter-city journeys.

Living La Vida Loca in Galicia/Spain   

Reyes ingenuity

The 6th of January used to be the time Spanish kids got their Xmas presents, not the 25th of December. But, as Spain's culture moves closer and closer to that of the rest of Western Europe, things have changed. Now, of course, they get gifts on both days. And on their birthdays. And on their saint's day, I suspect.

The UK

Well, my email of complaint actually produced a result. Someone in the NHS Business Unit emailed me late morning to ask now she could help. So I emailed her the text of the letter I was just about to post and now await a reply re my current and future EHIC. Or GHIC as it'll eventually become. If you're a Brit resident here and don't know what the latter is, you'd better get googling.

Confidence in government handling of the epidemic has plummeted from a hight of 72% in late March to a dismal 36% recorded just before Christmas. Much, of course, rests on the success or otherwise of the forthcoming vaccination programme, only there are probably many who are not entirely confident in the government's ability to deliver.  I’m astonished it’s as high as 36%.

The EU

There seems to be a lot of discontent re the slow approval and roll-out of the Pfizer vaccine, born of centralisation in the name of 'solidarity'. Fingers are pointing at Mrs Merkel because she drove this mid-2020, it's said . . . Angela Merkel blocked the bid to secure more coronavirus vaccine, forcing health ministers to hand over control to the European Commission last summer. For more recent developments, see here.

For whatever reason, France seems to have been particularly slow. Which is rather ironic, given the long-standing admiration of its public healthcare system. As of December 30, only 139 people had been jabbed there.

The USA

Stand by for peak madness in the Congress today.

The Way of the World/Nutters Corner

Democrat representative Emanuel Cleaver delivered the the opening prayer of the 117th US Congress on Monday, ending it with Amen and awoman. Wokism on steroids, then.

Amen is, of course, Aramaic and Hebrew for So be it. As a pastor, he should perhaps have known this.

Spanish

Ooof. Reader paideleo tells me I was wrong to change canita to cañita. The former was correct, as una cana/canita means 'a hair' and the phrase translates as 'to let your hair down' or 'to have a fling'. In other words, an affair. In contrast, una caña/cañita is a cane/rod/pole/fishing rod. And, of course, a smallish draught beer.

A bit of Spanish I noted earlier in the year in Jávea - casa piloto: the 'show house' among several new ones. 

 

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



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