Thursday, July 28, 2011

You read some daft things about Galicia. And not only in the books of the historian Hugh Thomas. Today, for example, I came across the suggestion that percebes (goose barnacles) are called “elephants' feet barnacles”. Though, on reflection, I guess this is possible in the USA. Not so for the ridiculous claim that the Galician language – a sister of Portuguese – is similar to, would you believe, Welsh. I can only imagine the writer believed all the guff he was given about Galicia being Celtic. As for the following, I wonder whether it's just another of the myths in which this region abounds - “The dome-shaped tetilla ('little tit') cheese is creamy and delicious with an interesting story behind it. It’s said that Galicians began making the cheese to protest the move by the church to reduce the breasts of a female sculpture in Santiago cathedral; the male sculpture across from it was said to have been grinning because of them”

Talking about Spain's regions . . . The Spanish “Catholic Kings”, Ferdinand and Isabela, were wont to move their court around the peninsula, as they brought the
Reconquista to a successful conclusion in 1492, the year our famous Poio-an, Christopher Columbus, set sail westwards for The East Indies. Ironically, the only region they never ever visited was Asturias, where the Reconquista had begun centuries before. In 722 at the battle of Covadonga, to be sort of exact. Even more ironic, of course, is the fact that Columbus was in the West Indies when he thought he was off the Chinese coast. And continued to think so for rather a long time. Despite the sniggering of everyone else. This stubbornness of one of the few things that backs the claim that he's Galician.

Not Going Out” is the sort of sit-com I dreamt of writing as a young man. For me, easily the wittiest/funniest thing on British TV. But, then, I'm a great admirer of Lee Mack and am hopelessly in love with Sally Bretton, who plays Lucy. OK, you can sometimes see the gag being set up but this is never laborious. And the program makes me laugh even more that “Curb Your Enthusiasm”. Does higher praise exist? Incidentally, WiFi Ponte refused to open the page of fotos of Sally, on the grounds it could be pornographic. I wish.

Although shops close every day in Pontevedra, it's not all one way. This outlet opened this week, giving us yet another gift shop to go with the hundred we already have.


And then there's the health food places, which (aptly enough) continue to sprout all over the city. I must count them one day.

Regular readers will know that, as this foto shows, the car-park of the granite carvers' school behind my house is used as a dump for pieces and slabs of granite.


But, walking Peter's dog today, I came across this, apparently abandoned, attempt at a human figure.


I guess it's pretty clear why it was abandoned.

Conversation of the Day.
I didn't think I was going to have one of these but at 7pm someone rang my bell . . .
Yes?
Hola. We're collecting water samples.
Who are you?
We're X, authorised by the Xunta.
(Suppressing my total scepticism). Really?
Yes. We're collecting samples of water from your tap and we'll tell you how pure it is. Free of charge.
OK. . . . . (Going off to collect a sample of filtered water from the fridge, not the tap).
Here you go.
My, that's cold.
Yes.
Is it from a well?
Yes.
OK, can you give me your name and address.
xxxxx
Are you German?
No, English. Are you really asking me for my age and marital status?
Yes.
What on earth for?
We have to.
Forget it.
OK. We'll call you in 20 days to tell you what your water's like.
OK.

Of course, I've no doubt that – although I gave them filtered water – they'll come back and tell me it's full of horrible chemicals. Not on the basis of any testing, needless to say. Except they won't, as I gave her the wrong phone number and she wrote down a surname based on my pronunciation which bears no resemblance at all to the number in the phone book. Bit of a shame that, as I was looking forward to hearing what nonsense they spouted when they came back with the results.

As for crisis-ridden Spain, here's David Jackson with a nice tale of the Good and Bad Times

And again.

So the execrable Piers Morgan has over a million followers to his tweets. What a world.

Finally . . . A few people have expressed interest in the TV-B-Gone I mentioned last night. Write to me at colindavies@terra.es if you live in Madrid or Galicia and want one. I will then put in a shipping order and get yours to you, one way or another.

Finally, finally . . .  Here's the mattress I didn't snap yesterday. Or, rather, the place where it was. Someone obviously got to it before me . . .



Spooky . . . I've just looked at this post and there seems to be an image of a mattress under the trees. Trick of the light? Or a ghost in the machine?

8 comments:

Sierra said...

"...Piers Morgan has over a million followers to his tweets"

Only outnumbered by the number of followers who retweeted this afternoon the false news that he had been suspended by CNN. Well done Jon Snow

Ferrolano said...

Colin, I know that the naming of the tetilla cheese following the bust reduction of a female sculpture in Santiago Cathedral due to the leering grin of a fellow sculpture opposite, to be quite true as I was reliably informed by the same tour guide who explained about the remains of St. James being located in a vault below. Who would want any other story?

Colin said...

Well, certainly not if you'd made a month long pilgrimage of 2,000m. Personally, I'm just happy to see the humour in it all. For example the 6 priests will wield the botofumeiro just for you, if you make a donation of 300 euros.

Ferrolano said...

Likewise, I am more than happy for; the belief, the myth and the faith and, to see and partake in the irony. And not to forget the humor that comes along at times.

Candide said...

I have learned a new word: "wont". I like it. Thank you.

Is there really a Wifi service that blocks you from viewing totally legal pages? How cometh?

Eugenia said...

Hi Colin - gift shops, shoe shops and opticians! Eugenia

Colin said...

@ Candide. Indeed there is. The city provides free wifi in some of the squares but dictates what you can and can't download. Protects kids, I guess.

@ Eugenia. Indeed x 2!

Candide said...

Truly amazing. I think this is how the Neanderthals died out.

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