That old EU gravy train: Despite having annual salaries of €8,000 a month (plus expenses, of course), 53% of parliamentary deputies admit to having parallel activities. Not a bad number, then.
Pontevedra is a small city with a village mentality. Gossip is its stock-in-trade. I heard of a rumour today that puts me in a rather flattering light. Although untrue, I'll be doing my best to spread it further. Like all good rumours, it has a base in logic and plausibility.
The problems I had at the Tráfico yesterday led me to muse on these facts:-
- Some lamps I ordered in August have yet to arrive. I'll shortly make my 4th or 5th visit to the shop, because of a promised availability.
- Two garden chairs I wanted repaired for my August visitors have just been done, after 4 visits and several phone calls.
- A beard trimmer I ordered in August hasn't yet arrived.
Am I angry? Hell, no. You can't live here happily without learning to reduce and then manage your expectations. And everyone is always so nice about things.
I had 2 unusual begging experiences this evening.
- After finding my new bank card wouldn't dispense cash, I found myself having to tell a beggar I was absolutely skint. He was unamused. Even less so when I asked him for a loan.
- A female beggar whom I've seen every day for 14 years - sometimes several times a day - arrived at the table with a dog in tow. This is the second indication I've noted of traditional beggars aping the business model of the irritating perroflautas - the scruffy drug addicts with docile dogs who 'play' the pipes. The beggars, not the dogs, I mean.
Yesterday I realised I have friends who are Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, atheist, agnostic and Bahai. What I don't have - despite living 7 years in islamic countries - is a single Muslim friend. Which is odd. And I struggle for an explanation. So . . . if you're an overlooked Muslim friend of mine, please let me know. Net friends don't count.
Finally . . . This is an interesting - and possibly sacred - garage I sometimes pass on the way into town.
And this is the sun rising directly above the river below my house on October 14 every year. A coincidence? I think not.