Monday, January 16, 2012

Possibly Galicia's most famous native son - Manuel Fraga - died over the weekend, aged 89. Fraga's political career stretched back over almost 60 years and included the Franco era, when he was the Minister for Tourism on whose watch the controversial slogan Spain is different was introduced. Here's a review of his career from Guy Hedgecoe of IberoSphere. And here, from Graeme (a man of the Left) is a rather more amusing valediction.

A survey has shown the almost 90% of Spaniards "feel uncomfortable speaking English", including many who've studied it for more than 15 years. Almost 100% of people surveyed thought that the standard of teaching English in Spanish schools was "not the best". My own guess is that the emphasis continues to be on grammar, with little time given to actually speaking the language.

I wrote about "celebrity" corruption cases the other day. Questioned during the trial of others charged with corruption, the (lady) mayor of Valencia asserted that ‘A Louis Vuitton bag is an absolutely normal gift’. Which is probably true.

In its quest for more funds, the Spanish government is looking at privatising the paradors. These are luxury hotels, usually located in magnificent old mansions. If this does happen, it can only mean higher prices.

Finally . . . Did you know that the sun is slowly getting hotter and will eventually cause the oceans to boil? The good news is that it'll be a billion years before this happens. Which certainly gives us time to consider the options. Assuming we survive this, the next problem will be the Andromeda galaxy colliding with ours. But we've got three billion years to ponder this.

1 comment:

Ferrolano said...

The death of Don Manuel Fraga finally heralds the end of an era.

Meanwhile, I really wish that I could convince friends and associates that an LV bag, or similar, is an “absolutely normal gift”

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