Another visitor, my friend Richard from Ferrol, has been introduced to the glories of Pontevedra's old quarter today. In a mixture of mist and sun. One of our treats was a visit to the new museum (“Centre for Research”) centred on the huge defensive ditch (fosa) under Plaza de Santa Maria, discovered by accident a few years ago. Once again, the excellent guide – recognising we were English – bowed to our sensibilities and omitted the fact that the fire which destroyed the tower above the ditch had been started by English raiders in the 18th. Century. I was also impressed to see that their leaflet now comes not only in Gallego but also in both Spanish and English. Less impressive was the translation in the last of these. Needless to say, it hadn't been near a native speaker. So it is that A partir de la información disponible y con el concurso de destacados especialistas . . . gets translated as “From the information available and from the tender of key specialists . . .”. Shame. Ha'porth of tar.
Talking of translation . . . Regular readers will know that English film titles are often rendered into Spanish in ways which have no relation to the original. In similar vein, the name of royal personages elsewhere are always given in their Spanish version. So Prince Charles is Carlos, Queen Elizabeth becomes Isabel and Princess Katherine transmogrifies into Catalina. I wonder if this happens so much in the opposite direction but suspect not.
I touched on politics ahead of the November elections yesterday. Here's a fellow blogger on the same subject, displaying a degree of scepticism/cynicism possibly even greater than my own.
I also mentioned the albariño harvest the other day. The overseas growth of the market for this (expensive) wine has been a success story of the last decade. But local growers must be a tad worried to see that the Australians are muscling in on it. Gisborne's Riversun Nursery have launched their first (Cooper's Creek) vintage, claiming it's “as pure as the peel of a bell”. Those in the know say it's “clean and deliciously fresh with plenty of juicy acid”, rather that “giving the impression of a lightweight peachy viognier, as some of these wines do”. And that “The peach in it is combined with citrus and gooseberry to produce a very appealing fruity mix. This is a wine that screams out for paella, or green-lipped mussels at the very least, though it will go equally well with pasta, chicken and risotto.”. So watch out, Galicia. The aggressive Aussies are coming. Let's hope the end result is a long overdue price decrease for albariños from whatever source.
I showed fotos of three facades yesterday. Just along from these is a cafe which has taken the place of an art shop which closed down a short while ago.
As there are two more cafes within fifty metres, I can't see it surviving. Maybe the owners are relying on custom from all the new owners of the flats in this nearby new block. If so, I hope they have deep pockets.
Finally . . . Here's the nearby refurbished (but empty) shop which took the place of Pontevedra's only sex shop a year or two ago. It seems that – outside the brothels and pisos de relax - there wasn't enough sex going on in Pontevedra to keep it going.