"The European Commission has warned of the increasing divide in wellbeing, because of the crisis, between countries of the centre and peoples of the periphery, especially between Germany and Spain." Hmm. Not quite what the EU is all about, is it? Time to wheel out again that old cynical quote that "The consequence of every major reform is the exact opposite of what was intended." Divergence, not convergence in other words. BTW - Having just searched it, I see this is called the Perversity Thesis:- Whereby any action to improve some feature of the political, social, or economic order is alleged to result in the exact opposite of what was intended.
Checking out MP4 players on line yesterday, I was struggling to understand how one of them could have an "amazing glossy end". I eventually realised this was a reference to its 'finish' - the perils of avoiding the cost (very low these internet days) of having your text run over by a native speaker.
It was a mother and her equally reckless young son on parallel bikes what did it. As of today, I'll be carrying a walking cane when I wander into and out of town for my midday tiffin and a read of the papers. Hopefully, the fear of it ending up between their spokes will cause cyclists to give me a wider berth than is currently the case, if not slow down. (I originally typed 'birth' in that sentence and was going to leave in the mistake as an ironic reflection on native speakers. But then I thought - "Who the hell is going to get that, with the possible exceptions of Trevor over at Kalebeul or Alfie at Metis Meets Mittington? And probably not even them. And no one will believe me post factum. So I changed it.)
Incidentally, the only reason I've not used a cane before now is that this habit is affected by the super elegant Draculín ('Little Dracula') as he covers more or less the same ground as me every day. And I didn't want to be seen as a pathetic copy. But needs must.
For 1 or 2 days a year - around now - the sun rises over the distant hills directly above the Lerez river, between me and the city of Pontevedra. Here's how it rose yesterday:-
And here's how it rose on a rather cloudier today.
Of course, if it's raining on these 2 days, we have to wait another year, at least. Rather like Druids in Stonehenge, I imagine. With probably the same degree of disappointed swearing.
Finally . . . Here's a foto sent by a friend. It's actually me in the pram:
This will be of interest to very few people. Nonetheless . . . .
Here's a list I've compiled essentially for my own interest. It's of some common Spanish words and their Gallego(Galician) equivalents. What I've tried to do is put them in categories of similarity. Sometimes the change is made in one direction and sometimes in the other, as with the N and the Ñ. I haven't bothered to make sub categories when the latter happens. And sometimes the change would put the words in 2 categories but I haven't bothered to do this.
Spanish ('Castellano/Castelán) are both official languages in Galicia but I won't go into how many people 'dominate' each language, which class they belong to and where they live. This is marshy ground. Both are considered languages, not dialects, and Gallego/Galego is seen as a sister language to Portuguese, both descending from a Western Iberian parent. Galicians and Portuguese will argue until the end of time as to which is the elder sister.
Galician speakers - or some of them at least - see their language as being closer to Latin (see the F/H) category and, therefore, somehow purer. I don't see this myself but each to his own. But I do agree that the regular substitution of the X(sh) for Spanish's harsh Js, Gs, etc. does make Gallego a softer language to listen to, especially when there are two, say, Js in a Spanish word - like Jenjo, which becomes Xenxo(Shensho).
To the horror of some Galician readers, I'm not making any conscious attempt to learn Gallego, as I did with Spanish. To most people the reasons will seem obvious but to others my decision will be seen as an insult to Galicia and as proof that I'm a "Spanish nationalist". But that's their problem.
There will be mistakes of both commission and omission in what follows. If you feel strongly about these, feel free to advise me. But without telling me I'm an idiot. I have enough such advisers already.
I hope a few of you will enjoy this exercise. If you want to add to the list, I'd be delighted to receive your thoughts. Meanwhile, my apologies for the fact that the formatting of the original document is not reproduced here.
One letter more/less
Por lo Polo
Por la Pola
Caña Cana R
J, Z, Y, G/X
And now for some completely different . . . .
Cerrar Pechar (Fechar in Portuguese)
Perro Can (Latin canis)
Los que Cales