I've heard it said more than once that Spain will never really prosper under its own steam as long as only 10-20% of the population work as hard as anyone else in the world, while the rest are happy to be carried as passengers. I'm reminded of the time the Dean of the Law Faculty of Santiago wrote to the Voz de Galicia saying they could hardly be expected to pass more than 20% of the students if 80% of them failed to turn up for the exam. And now comes this notice from a university teacher expressing anger at the pathetic efforts of her students in a Physics exam. Given that Spanish is a phonetic language, I'm struggling to understand her complaint about spelling mistakes. Perhaps V and B.
It seems a lot more snakes are being caught or run over in Vigo than ever before. Particularly the Culebra Bastarda. Or the Malpolon Monspessulanus, as it's known in the rest of the world. No one seems to know why its numbers are rising but fortunately, though venomous, it's not fatal to humans. But it can give you a nasty shock if it raises its head in your toilet. Especially if you're sitting on it, as one terrified young woman recently was.
David Cameron's (now lone) fight to stop Mr Juncker becoming President of the EU Commission has again raised and answered the question of who rules Europe. The answer, of course, is Germany. Not Mrs Merkel this time but her junior coalition partner, the SPD. She, it's said, is just as antipathetic towards Mr Juncker as Mr Cameron, but has been unable to prevail in this case. Mr Junker, of course, is the ex-president of Luxembourg, a country which has defied all EU efforts to deal with money laundering and secret bank accounts. Not much of a reformer, then. Just as Mr Cameron claims.
We had a couple of novelties in Pontevedra this weekend:-
1. A new type of beggar. A chap in a military cap, standing on a corner in front of a placard that said something like Checa + España = Skoda.
2. A fiesta gastronomica of octopus. Which I can take or leave.
Finally . . . There was a cartoon in the latest Private Eye which was funny before the events of last week but hilarious after them. It has the England team descending from their plane on their arrival in Brazil, with the Captain shouting from the cockpit: "Shall I keep the engines running?"