Wednesday, November 22, 2006

I spoke too soon about the absence of violence during the botellón. There were several stabbings up in Ourense during the weekend, albeit involving South American gangs, it’s reported.

It was International Road Mortality Day over the weekend. Several of our youths celebrated this in the traditional way – wrapping themselves around oncoming trees and smashing into passing walls. Who can be surprised that the number 1 concern for Galicians is ‘Traffic and Public Transport’? Though I’m not totally convinced this includes the slaughter on the highways in the early hours of Saturday and Sunday mornings. And I fear I’m getting boring on this subject.

So, on a lighter note . . . Another Groundhog Day moment today. My conversation with a very pleasant young lady in the ironmongers went as follows. Regular readers will remember a similar exchange the last time I visited this establishment to buy an ‘ecological’ cage. . .

Hola. I spoke to you a while back about a cage for catching rats and you said you’d order one for me.

Yes, we did. In fact, we got 4.
Oh good. Can I have one?
No, they all sold out. We’ve sold a lot of things for rats recently.
It must be the weather. But you asked me for my phone number when I ordered a cage.
Yes, but I forgot about calling you.
OK, I give up. I’ll take the one in the window that kills them.

Residents in Spain will recall their own similar experiences and, like me, will wonder why on earth we’re always asked for our phone numbers by Spanish shopkeepers. I suppose we should be grateful they don’t demand our ID details as well.

Galicia Facts

A reader of my Galicia web page yesterday asked me what advice I’d give about moving here. After contemplating the 5th day of continuous rain, I was tempted to say ‘Look somewhere else’. Well, today was the 6th day of the thick, grey blanket and a non-stop downpour, so suicide is beginning to look like an option. Thank God for the bright spot of the Thanksgiving Day dinner tonight at Pontevedra’s English Speaking Society. Assuming I survive the day.

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