Saturday, October 04, 2014

Free Cataluña!; Ligando; Young women; The super NHS; Mrs Robinsong; & Thoughtless Fernando.


We now know what 'continuing the Catalan referendum process' means; the region's president is appointing a committee to plan what's to be done on Nov. 9. Predictably, the Spanish government has said it will appeal this at the Constitutional Court. And so the slow dance of something continues, in the general direction of a total standoff. Or civil war. Either way, I'll be on a ferry boat to the UK on the day in question.

A strange experience in my midday tapas bar today. I was chatted up - I think. By a lively lady, who asked about my book as I was leaving. And then invited me to join her and her (female) colleague at their table. Among other things, she offered to find me a flat in Vigo, where she lives. Only one drawback - She's in her 70s and I'm not. Or she's had too much sun and smoked a fair bit. Does that sound ungallant?

Talking of age . . . There are quite a few women on Spanish TV who look 20 years older than they did 10 years ago. Like Carole Vorderman in the UK. The doyenne of these is undoubtedly the Filipina Isabel Preysler, whose husband has just died. La Isabel is said to be 63 but looks younger than her 20-something daughter. She puts it all down to 'soap and water', which I've tried but without the same degree of success. I'm told Miss Preysler rarely appears on TV because she's 'not good at that sort of thing'. Which is praise indeed in my book.

There's a widespread belief in the UK that the National Health Service was not only the first such in the world but is still "the envy of the world". It isn't, of course, but politicians of all stripes cynically play along with this nonsense, especially in the months before general elections. And so all parties in the last week have promised 'a billion pounds extra' to the NHS in the next parliament. The LibDems took the idiocy biscuit with their reference to the 'jewel in the country's crown'. Paste, presumably.

Cutting the grass this afternoon, I heard a robin chirping away. So I put on a recording of a robin singing, to see if it would react. It certainly did, flying to a tree close to the open door of the house and issuing either a romantic greeting or a nasty warning.

Finally . . . I rather liked this comment on a famously fast young Spaniard: While Alonso is widely regarded as the finest driver on the grid, his decisions over any period of time longer than a split-second have been dubious at best.

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