But on to larger matters . . . In case you weren’t aware of this from reading this blog, El País confirmed today that “
is the EU country where’s there’s the greatest incidence of paying for sex and where this is least hidden from view.” Tolerance, the paper said, had normalised the social perception of commerce in sex. Interestingly, El País described the attitude of the Catholic Church here in terms I’ve long suspected were true as regards Spanish wives . . . “It believes that the use of prostitutes is less of a threat to the family than the taking of a lover”. Or the lesser of two evils, in effect. The paper rightly dismissed this as double morality. Incidentally, there are, naturally enough, many word for prostitute in Spanish but the article provided a new one to me – una ramera. Spain
I read today that David Cameron's Big Society “is the devolution of power, or it is nothing”. In contrast, the New Labour state was “unitary, uniform, controlled and homogeneous”. The Big Society, the writer insisted, “should, by definition, be untidy, disaggregated and joyously cacophonous.” Well, off the top of my head, I can’t think of a better description of the Spanish system of government. And I’m not sure it would be everyone’s model of choice.
But, anyway, there was a good example of devolved power in today’s El País – Down in Andalucia, the regional government is considering alleviating its healthcare funding challenge by introducing patient co-payments in hospital - for better food, hairdressing and laundry and the like. As far as I’m aware, Andalucia is the first region to contemplate this. The other thought that struck me is that this approach would be impossible in the
’s NHS, whether under Old Labour, New Labour or the Conservative-Lib Dem coalition. Some things are going to remain centralised and unitary, come Hell or high water. UK
A conversation between me and my younger daughter before she left yesterday:-
Dad, do you have a pair of tweezers I can borrow?
Yes. They’re in my wash-bag . . . Hmmm. It seems they’re not. I must have lost them.
Well, I’ve got a confession to make. Last time I was here, I borrowed them and took them back to the
So, what you’re really asking me is whether I’ve replaced the tweezers you misappropriated?
I guess so.
Well, no. Though I might have done, if I’d ever been told they’d been filched. You can use the pair I keep in the garage to take ticks off the dog . . .
Flight options into and out of
now being what they are(n’t), said daughter flew back to Galicia from England , where she met up with her sister who’d travelled up from Valladolid . The latter had chosen a superior hotel specifically because it was said to be in a quiet area of the city. So you can imaginer her surprise and annoyance when she was woken in the middle of the night by a religious procession which featured perorations via a megaphone. Presumably related to All Saints or All Souls. So little wonder that Faye said it was enough to raise the dead. Madrid
Finally . . . There is a certain ‘people’ odour which I associate with
. This emanates from clothes on some of the people I bump into and I initially attributed it to (relative) poverty. Now, however, I suspect it comes from storing clothes over the winter or the summer in damp conditions. I mention this because I was surprised to detect in on myself when wearing a new pullover recently given to me. Does anyone else living in Galicia know what I mean and have any info to impart on this smell? Galicia