This may sound strange but I sometimes I catch myself wishing I smoked. Why? Because it would give me a reason to sit on my back steps and revel in the setting of the sun on Pontevedra, way down below me. Why don't I just go and do this without a cigarette in my hand? Dunno really. Perhaps it's a function of the protestant work ethic. I wouldn't feel comfortable just sitting there doing nothing.
As expected, there are reports that, despite the awards of tenders, work on Spain's high speed train – the AVE – has ground to a halt. As someone has put it, neither the paperwork nor the machines are moving. I hereby withdraw my prediction of 2018 as the year in which we'll be able to train rapidly down to Madrid. Mind you, in the UK they're talking about dates like 2035 for high-speed trains to the north.
The latest thieving politician in the dock is the Mayor of Alicante, Sonia Castedo, who's been arraigned on three counts of corruption. As has her predecessor. Is there a clean mayor out there? By the way, I have to confess to getting daughter and father mixed up yesterday. The woman whose father has won the Christmas lottery three or four times is the politician who said Que se joden! (Fuck 'em) when the socialist deputies complained about the effect of cuts on the unemployed.
One of the governments new tax measures is to bring in prescription charges for senior citizens. I think I've expressed already some concern as to how this would be done. But, here, we have a fulsome description of the modus operandi. Keep it complex and paper-heavy again seems to have been the approach taken. As you would expect.
Here's a quote on the property situation in Spain - The housing stock has increased by 3.5%, or 888,972 new homes, since the crisis began in 2008, despite a 95% collapse in new housing starts. Thanks to the inertia in the home building industry it can take two years or more for declining housing starts to feed through into lower construction completions. “Two years”? We should have been so lucky. It took 6 years to build the 23 properties behind ours. All of which lie empty. And without even a Se Vende sticker in any window.