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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: 25 February 2021
25 February 2021 @ 11:13

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'


Very early in the Covid saga, a Spanish doctor stressed the importance of the size of the viral load you were hit with. So it's good news that a growing body of evidence suggests the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines reduce viral transmission.   

Cosas de España

Here's a warning for those resident here below the horizon.

The last remaining statue of Franco in Spain has finally been taken down - from a wall in  Melilla, one of Spain's 2 enclaves (not a colony!) in North Africa. Needless to say, this was resisted by the ultra right-wing party Vox.

Cousas de Galiza

The Covid restriction levels here go from 5 (the least) to 1 (the most). In the UK and Ireland, I  believe, they go in the other direction. What this says about respective jurisdictions, I’ve no idea. Quite possibly nothing other than Spain is different.

Anyway, as I've said, right now we're all rather confused about where we're allowed to go. This is because there are 2 considerata: 1. The level of infections where you live, and 2. Your particular health authority. Here's a map showing the former. 

We in Pontevedra should be able to go to places of the same colour but, if they're in the health authority of either La Coruña or Ferrol, we can't. And folk in Vigo should able to go to Santiago, though not to differently-coloured Pontevedra. But, as they'd have to pass through the latter, some say they can't. Unless they go by boat, perhaps. We await clarification. But god only knows how this mare's nest will be policed.

Here's María’s Tsunami, Day 24. Maria points out that many people here aren't on their town hall's register - the padrón. So they won't be called for a jab, even though this in now obligatory under our brand new (highly controversial) law. Quite how this will work out is in the lap of the proverbials. Will a vaccination certificate be yet another thing we have to show the police if stopped while driving? Or even just while walking. And where can a forgery be obtained?

The UK

It was to be expected . . . Boris Johnson has begged Brits to raise their seafood consumption to something way above the traditionally low level of this. You'd have to live in a cave not to know why. I guess it'll be the pork that used to go to Poland next.  


The word 'orange' used to be norange, like the Spanish word naranja. As with ‘nuncle’, it lost the N to the indefinite article, so went from being a norange to being an orange. I had thought naranja came from Arabic but it seems it really came from the Persian نارنجی - naranji - which itself came from the Sanskrit nāranga. So now you know.

Finally . . . 

Everyone knows about the Spanish Reconquista, when the Spanish - over several centuries - gradually took back El Andalús from the Moors. But how many know that England had its own Reconquista in the 10th century, when the Anglo-Saxons took back about half of England from the Danes who'd sort of moved into it? Until some Norwegian 'Vikings' came from Ireland and took over the Yorkish bit. For a short while, anyway - before they, too, were ousted by the Anglos. Who then had a bit of a respite before William arrived with his fellow Viking descendants from Normandy in 1066. Confusing times.

Incidentally 1: The last major battle against the uninvited Danes - in 937 - was at Brunanburh, which many think is Bromborough on the Wirral. A a voluntary group, Wirral Archaeology, is currently researching proof of this at a secret site there. All strength to their elbows, say I.

Incidentally 2: Back then the kingdom of Strathclyde was separate from the kingdom of Scotland and was, in fact, English. Will the UK get it back if Scotland achieves independence, I wonder.

Meanwhile . . . Is this the worst head-rug ever?

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