14.40: Third post of the day.
One of the main features of the Galician weather – apart from its predictable unpredictability – is that it tends to set in for days on end – whether it’s glorious sun, heavy rains or the miserable blankets of grey cloud which mar our winters. So it has been for over a week now with the strong, dry wind gusting day and night from the north east. No wonder the fires spread from the interior towards the western coast. And how lucky of Portugal to have the river Miño as its northern border with Galicia.
Local friends tell me it’s already illegal here not to clear your land of undergrowth. But no one is ever fined for not doing so and the law is naturally observed far more in the breach than in the observance. A not uncommon tale in Spain.
I guess it was inevitable – and possibly intended – but the soundbite about a criminal conspiracy seems to have been taken up with alacrity by every news agency and media outlet around the world. Most recently, though, the Galician President seems to have been modifying his tune a little. ‘Those arrested’, he insists, ‘knew exactly what they were doing. Sometimes more than once.’ This is a long way from alleging a criminal conspiracy. And neither is it true. Mental defectives might not be too aware of the consequences of their actions. Likewise the various alcoholics detained and the old chap in his 90s. But, hell, what is truth when you’ve got your power base to defend?