Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A couple of days ago, I had to fool Ponte-WiFi by using three different phone numbers and sign-in codes. But not even this was enough today. After closing on its standard 15 minutes, it then did this again ten minutes later. And then refused to work at all. Could this have anything to do with today being the big holiday of Galicia's patron saint, St James/Santiago? Who's clearly not the patron saint of the internet. I wonder who is.

Which reminds me . . . When new words come into being in Spain, who decides what gender they'll have? Take weblog and blog, for example. I believe these are both masculine but since it could take a few years for the Royal Academy to recognise them, how did they get their masculinity? Is there a basic rule that everything is masculine unless it's obviously feminine? Un gay, for example.

But anyway . . . There was a lovely family dinner in a lovely restaurant last night in honour of my lovely neighbour Ester's birthday. It started at 9, finished at 12 and then moved home for dessert and drinks. And more drinks. Ester's lovely, about-to-depart, Viking au pair, Hanna, drew the short straw with the liqueurs but made a good fist (mouth?) of semi-downing an aguadiente(firewater) which is also used to clean graffiti from the city's walls.

During my research of the retail scene, I've naturally come across some bizarre names for shops. Such as an outlet for kids' clothes called Sergeant Major. And then there's Go Home. Given this is now closed, it seem a rather appropriate injunction. Much better than, say, Come In and Buy.

By chance I came across one of my posts from 2007 today. When I was already writing about closing shops and opening We Buy-Your-Gold kiosks. Five years already!

Asked about the food eaten during the Franco period tonight, a BBC contributor said that these, of course, were times of hardship and even famine. And that, ironically, the 'sort of polenta' commonly eaten back then was now considered fashionable. Even though too much of it can make you ill. But I suppose too much anything – say, wine – can make you ill.

Reader Sierra has kindly provided this article on Spain's new residency requirements for us EU citizens, which she says are even more complex that the provisions on prescription charges. Keep it Complex, as I regularly say.

The Eurozone: Click here for another (large) dose of pessimism. How justified it is, I couldn't say.

Finally . . . I saw this today on the window of a branch of our new Galician bank, formed by fusing our two savings banks. Handily, it's in Gallego but if you're a Spanish speaker and, more so, a Portuguese speaker, you should be able to navigate your way through the ten undertakings. Which will almost certainly be taken with a huge pinch of salt by everyone. Except the directors still enriching themselves and their friends and cronies, one way or another.


Alfred B. Mittington said...

I seem to remember the Patron Saint of all IT is Saint Isidore of Seville, appointed to the post in the mid 1990s for reasons which surely only learned theologians will be able to appreciate fully.


Azra said...

I'm interested in what was life like for you 5 years ago. Perhaps I should take a trip down memory lane :)