News from Pontevedra today that yet another well-known café-restaurant has closed its doors - El Gloria, near the town-hall. Hard not to see a connection with the decision earlier this year to refurbish the place and raise all the prices. Go upmarket, in a word. In the process the bar lost (or possibly mislaid) its most regular customers, the gay crowd. Who sashayed off to an upstairs room in El Pasaje. Which used to be the quietest wi-fi place in town but which isn't any more. Just a lot gayer.
For me, this news was somewhat less disturbing than tonight's report that one of Galicia's many fires had reached my finca in the hills behind Pontevedra, scorching all the bramble and broom bushes outside my fence and burning down one of my oak trees. Thankfully, though, the wonderful fire brigade - or possibly several of them - got there in time to save my house and the other eight trees. Not to mention my neighbours' massive - and only recently finished - granite pile.
As for good news, none could be more welcome than the announcement from ETA that it has finally given up its campaign of violence in the Basque Country. Assuming it really has this time.
But onto more important matters . . . Whither the EU? Who on earth knows? But here's an interesting suggestion from Jeremy Warner of the Daily Telegraph. He, (like others) "sees a continent careering, apparently helplessly, towards the economics of the Great Depression" . . . The more compelling long-term solution from [the British] perspective is the one first fleshed out by the former head of the Federation of German Industries. This would be to split the euro in two, but with France allying itself with the Mediterranean periphery so as to prevent too precipitous a devaluation of the southern fringe. This would, in turn, restore competitiveness while both limiting the inflationary impact in the periphery and the losses in the Germanic core. Conditions in Europe will need to deteriorate by several orders of magnitude before such thinking is even remotely contemplated by eurozone leaders, but, regrettably, that’s the way we seem to be heading. Whether this is any more feasible than any of the other (crackpot?) ideas adumbrated to date, I haven't the faintest idea. But, as I say, it's certainly interesting.
I leave you with a philosophical conundrum posed by Sir Ken Robinson in a talk he gave on education a few years ago:- You know the old chestnut about whether a tree that falls unheard in a forest can really be said to have fallen? Well, in like vein, if a man decides to express an opinion in a forest but is unheard by a woman, is he still wrong?
Answers welcome. Though only from women.
But if there's a man out there who knows why Galicia has all these fires but next-door Asturias doesn't, I'd like to hear from him.