Wednesday, January 23, 2013

This morning Faye and I walked up a steepish hill to get to the site of a Templar castle-cum-church-cum-monastery. Bit by bit we discovered we could've driven up. But that's what happens when you use an out-of-date guide-book which says you can only get there by foot. But, anyway, Alfie had told me it was well worth seeing and on this, at least, he got it right.

Another reason to ditch the guide book is that it recommended the chicken curry at a restaurant by the river. They no longer did this, the waiter told me. But they did do a delectable prawn curry. Not entirely true. It was the worst curry I'd eaten in 40 years. Even worse that the curry crap they serve in Chinese restaurants. But Faye had a delicious grilled bream. Luck of the draw, I guess.

This afternoon we drove from Tomar to Lisbon airport to pick a dear friend, ahead of spending the night with her and her partner in Carcabelas, on the coast. Thanks to the satnav sending us, first, 10km westwards and back and, then, 15km northwards and back, we were an hour late at the airport. And one of us was not in a very good mood. Especially as the petrol warning light had been flashing violently for 15 minutes. But all's well etc.

Far more seriously, in this article Alan Murphy takes a look at what he sees as the four possible scenarios for post-crisis Spain. His initial assumption is that the existing state of Spain will not be able to survive long enough to hold general elections again in 2015, and that therefore Rajoy’s Partido Popular government will be the last of the 1978-model Kingdom of Spain. Pretty contentious stuff.

Here in Portugal, I finally got to use my Chip & Pin debit card the right way - i. e. without needing to prove my identity or sign anything. How long will it be, I wonder, before Spain, follows suit on this. I hope I live to see it.

Finally . . . The CEO of the Portuguese Banco do Espíritu Santo has sent me a Friend request on Facebook. And a foto of himself looking like a film star. I know he's a banker but can he really be that lonely and friendless.


J. A. Roberts said...

There appears to be progress on this side of the frontier too, in Andalucia of all places. For the first time ever, yesterday at Mercadona the card reader was pointing the right way around. I was then asked to insert the card myself. Slightly shocked, I did so, entered the PIN and then removed the card myself. No ID requested. I was not quite sure what to do with myself after that so went for a sit-down on the bench outside...

Colin said...

Hope you are over the shock. I look forward to testing the water in Mercadona back in Ponters.

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