Tuesday, February 07, 2006

One of those little noble acts today which are so Spanish – When I knocked over my beer, the waitress immediately brought me a fresh glass, as if it has been her fault. Free, of course.

The number of Muslims in Spain is around 800,000, or 1.8% of the population. This compares with 5 -10% in France, 3.7% in Germany and 2.5% in the UK. Most other countries in Europe are of the same order but, strangely, the Irish percentage is 0.1%. Perhaps it’s the rain. It can’t be the wearing of the green, as this, of course, is the Islamic colour. Maybe they have to take a tap-dancing test.

When I first came to Galicia, there was no shortage of locals to tell me society here was somewhat short of meritocratic. In fact, some felt it was still pretty feudal. As Pontevedra looked to me rather more 21st century that the town I’d come from in the UK, I was sceptical of this. But now I know rather better. And I’ve come to share the fatalistic attitude that stems from knowing that, if someone’s in a job because he/she’s related to someone else, there’s not much point complaining, as nothing is going to happen. This helps to explain why there’s a tendency here to do an awful lot of talking about things but to take little action.

I see the UK tabloid The Daily Express has dredged up the theory that Princess Diana was killed when a British agent on a motorbike blinded the driver of her car with a laser pistol. For what it’s worth, my own theory is she was strangled by Dodi Fayed when he discovered the CIA had replaced his photo in the locket around her neck with a cartoon of the prophet Mohammad. All the events subsequent to this have been a smokescreen on the part of Mohammad Fayed, designed to keep Harrods’ name in the news. And to sell copies of The Daily Express.

Things were much better at Madrid’s 4th terminal yesterday; only 30% of flights were delayed.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don’t know where the Muslim figure for the UK came from, perhaps the official and deceitful government stats! Try the Muslim Council of Great Britain for a terrifyingly honest approximation of the real percentage. It is the highest in Europe.