Wednesday, February 06, 2013

If you set off to travel on a metro in other parts of the world at 3pm, you'd probably find the carriages pretty empty. Not so in Madrid yesterday, where they were packed to the gunwales at this hour. I assumed this was because folk were going home for 2 or 3 hours, only to have to repeat their homeward journey at 8, 9 or 10 at night. Mad, but that's the Spanish way of things. Perhaps it will change one day.

Talking of change . . . In 2014 Scotland will hold a referendum on independence from the UK. If the answer is Yes, it will automatically leave the EU and have to renegotiate re-entry. Reading about this today, I was struck that this was the answer to David Cameron's dilemma in 2015, if the English should vote in favour of leaving the EU. Whether or not Scotland has left the UK by then, the English should just declare independence from the UK. In other words primarily from themselves. This would leave the Welsh with the rump UK, which could be re-named Britannia. This would be rather fitting as it was to Wales that the original Brits fled when the Angles and Saxons came a-marauding from Germany. It's this sort of brilliant insight for which lawyers are paid millions.

Fraud comes in all sorts of guises. In Madrid, they've discovered that 13 of the containers in which you can deposit clothes and shoes don't belong to the city administration.

In a news report about the death of four climbers in an avalanche, this was referred to as 'a significant tragedy'. It got me wondering about what would count as an insignificant tragedy. Treading on an ant?

When I passed the offices of the Pontevedra provincial government today there were about 40 people milling around outside. I guessed they were there for a protest of some sort but couldn't tell whether they were chatting before or after the event. Likewise with the 20 people round the corner in a bar. It seemed a very relaxed affair.

Which reminds me . . . The lead story in today's Diario de Pontevedra was the mayor of the city meeting with the EU Director General of Transport. Quite why the latter is interested in the streets of a smallish city in a province in one of Spain's 17 regions is beyond me. But, then again, so much is. I guess the clue lay in the final paragraph about a 'competition' for a new fund coming up in a couple of months' time. Our mayor was polishing his apples. And possibly visiting the Galician Embassy/Cultural Centre in Brussels. There is one, of course, and it even has its own Facebook page. Sort of.

Down in Cuidad Rodrigo they have a chamber pot exhibition. Apparently, it gets more visitors than the the cathedral next door.

Finally . . . I had a cartoon I wanted to post but it's gone missing. It was a TV News announcer saying:- “The stock market fell by 3% today. No one knows why.” It fits with my view that nobody has the slightest idea why things happen in the marketplace.

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