Wednesday, September 21, 2005

The safety measures demanded by the gas company are now in place. But yesterday I discovered they’ve not been demanded of my neighbours, apparently because they didn’t get an inspection visit in March. So, it seems the best strategy for dealing with troublesome but non-persistent bureaucrats is the one I use for begging gypsies – just pretend to be out.

Given that one of Spain’s greatest joys is its uncrowded motorways, I was astonished to read today the country has the lowest ‘spare’ road capacity in Western Europe and faces gridlock within 10 years unless there’s massively increased investment in tarmac. My guess is this is either a reference to roads other than motorways or a bargaining ploy for more EU funds.

It’s good to see foreign tourists to Spain were up 6% in the year to end August but, after another trip to Santiago yesterday, I’m beginning to wonder about scrapping my web site on Galicia and Pontevedra. We foreigners still have an exotic flavour here in Pontevedra and are treated accordingly. 50km north in Santiago we’re just sheep.

As a case in point, I was given double tapas and double wine today simply because the barman had given me Rioja slightly inferior to the one I’d requested. Actually it was quadruple tapas, as my portions are routinely double. Very noble, the Spanish. Unless you’re one of thousands of tourists.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think you're right Colin, Galicia is becoming a best kept secret - that everybody knows about.

N said...

No, no...as a long-time resident of the Middle east and a (previous) resident of Northern Spain, I need my fix of your blog...don't let it go the way of SeƱor Fraga...who I remember wading in the Med when he was Minister of Tourism to prove that it was safe to bathe following a crashed US plane possibly carrying a nuclear weapon...ah...shades of John Gummer and BSE

Anonymous said...

I should correct my previous statement. I agree that Galicia is being "discovered" - NOT that you should end your blog.....