I've met very many Muslims, of all stamps. And very nice they've all been. Plus I've read the Koran twice and decided it would be easy to make a pleasant enough religion from its precepts. And then you hear a conversation like this:-
CMC (Charming Muslim Chap): Yes, I believe it would be possible to establish a true Islamic Caliphate, very different from that of ISIL.
SFJL (Slightly Feisty Jewish Lady): Would it tolerate people of all other faiths?
CMC: Yes, especially those of The Book [The Bible]. A Muslim man would be able to marry a Jewish woman, for example.
SFJL: But a Muslim woman wouldn't be able to marry Jewish man. That's discriminatory.
CMC: Those are the rules. And there are good reasons for them.
SFJL: It's discriminatory.
CMC: I don't think so.
That's the trouble with religions; they're never quite as tolerant as they say they are. Can you imagine such a conversation between atheists?
Ahead of a boat trip to the UK, I went to a pharmacy today to get some Stugeron or the equivalent. After a bit of internet research, I knew the right tablet size was 15-25mg but there was also a 75mg tablet for serious circulatory conditions. Which would knock me out for 1 to 3 days. Fortunately, this was only available on prescription. So, guess what I was offered. I had thought this 'flexibility' had reduced over the last 10 years - especially at this pharmacy - but perhaps not.
Life in Spain
- I regularly think the newspapers here should have a special Corruption section. But I always come up against the objection that this would then comprise 90% of the paper.
- Case in point: The amount which Andalucian politicians bled from EU funds meant for professional training has now risen from €2bn to €3bn. Via companies which either didn't exist or had had their student rolls stuffed with phoney names. All too easy.
Life in Galicia
The parishioners in a small town in the north west of the province have accused their priest of stealing jewels from the cloak of their virgin statue, under the pretext of restoring it. They've refused to carry the thing in procession and have posted notices calling for the curate's departure. Pictures here.
Life in Pontevedra
Reader Sierra kindly told me early this morning of developments in the case of the 13 drivers fined in my barrio early this year for turning their heads more than 45 degrees. Indeed, it was the lead item on the front page of the Diario de Pontevedra, which told us the local council had decided to quash the fines. The two cops, it said, had displayed excess zeal in handing out 12 tickets at the same roundabout in 28 minutes. The officers are appealing this verdict, claiming they interpreted the law correctly. My guess is they don't want to lose their commission.
Finally . . . On QI tonight, Stephen Fry insisted that the kingfisher bird only had this water-related name in the UK. So I checked for Spain, France and Germany - martín pescador; martin-pêcheur and eisvogel. So, 'fisher martin' in the first 2 cases and icebird in the last. Hmm.