So, the newly-weds have gone to The Seychelles for their honeymoon. Well, I hope they enjoy the islands as much as I did during my idyllic year there on VSO before I went to university in London. I've written this up, by the way, as part of an autobiography intended for my daughters. If anyone wants to see this, they can contact me via the button above right. Or on firstname.lastname@example.org
The good news about my neighbours is that they've all given me an effusive welcome home. Lots of hugs and kisses. And that's just the men. But the bad news is that Nice-but-Noisy Tony has been home from the sea since February and has no idea when he'll be going back. Given the din he makes (and also induces in his two sons), this fills me with dread.
But Tony does have his uses. He tells me that none of the just-finished houses behind ours have been sold and are all available for rent. He also explained the absence of the swimming pool - The Community of the Mountains successfully got back a small portion of the land which had been (illegally) sold to the developers, leaving the latter with no room for the pool. Given the lack of sales, they probably wouldn't have invested money in it anyway. Chicken or egg, perhaps. Very appropriate in Poio/Poyo.
There have, of course, been negative developments in Pontevedra city. First and foremost has been the closure of my regular lunchtime haunt. In addition, several more retail outlets have shut up shop. Which makes it all the more odd that yet another bloody healthfood shop has opened. Can there really be enough demand? Or is it just the fashionable way to launder drug profits?
Which, in a way, reminds me that we have entered the official pre-election period for our municipal elections, in which I'm entitled to vote. May the date come quickly as the major consequence is that the local papers are now remarkably boring. Possibly because someone is influencing the content.
Noticing that the doors of the new Asian buffet restaurant were open at the ridiculously early hour of 8pm, I wandered in and asked if they were really open. The place was so big (and empty) my voice echoed around it. "Yes," said a Chinese girl, "We are open. But the food won't be put out for at least an hour." This, I have to say, is a new definition of "open" for me. I wonder what she expected me to do for the next 60 minutes. Learn Mandarin?
Back in the UK, it's been announced that the police are going to hand out on-the-spot 100 pound fines for reckless/aggressive driving. But driving standards differ from country to country, making these terms relative. In Iran, it might be someone overtaking you on a blind bend; in Spain, it might be someone racing through a 30kph zone at 90; but, in the UK, it's probably someone failing to make a grateful hand gesture when he/she's been allowed out into the traffic.
So . . . How do bailouts work? Well, here's a little tale I've purloined to answer this pertinent question - “Once upon a time, there was a poor Irish village where everyone was in debt to each other. A rich German arrived at the local hotel and, as a deposit on a room, put down a €100 note. The hotelier grabbed the note and ran next door to pay his debt to the butcher. The butcher used the note to pay his supplier — who rushed to the local pub and paid his bar bill. The publican slipped the note to a local lady of the night for services previously rendered, and she took it back to the hotel to pay what she owed for room hire. But, as she put the note on the counter, the German reappeared, said he had decided not to stay after all, picked up the note and left. " And that, dear reader, is how bailouts work.
Finally . . . Everyone who doubted Kate McCan should be forced to read this. Especially all those crass Iberian commentators who said she had to be guilty because she was 'cold'. Meaning unlike them, of course. Cretins.